WILMINGTON — Owen Bryant Carlin, 89, passed on from this earth with peace and serenity Monday, March 29, 2021, after a long journey with chronic illnesses. Owen followed in death his wife, Rose, by three weeks to the day and hour; a testament to the love they had for each other, which was a blessing to them as to their children and all who knew them.
In his final years, Owen and his wife both required personal assistance, and Owen made it possible for his children to choose to assist them in their own homes. We are both grateful for that opportunity, and we also deeply appreciate the caregivers who accompanied us on this journey for their dedication and support.
Owen was born Jan. 27, 1932, in Brooklyn, New York. His family moved to Rutherford, New Jersey, where Owen was raised. His family’s experience of the country’s Great Depression imparted values that would stay with him the rest of his life. Owen attended Drexel University, earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemical Engineering through the work-study program. Owen satisfied his draft requirement by volunteering to serve in the U.S. Army on graduation and was stationed in Panama as a specialized educator.
After his marriage to longtime sweetheart Rose Marie Nostas in 1968, he dedicated himself to Rose and the raising of their two children, who came shortly after, Thomas Owen and Jeanette Elizabeth Rose. Owen and Rose continued to give as their two grandkids came along, Isabel Susannah and Luke Thomas, and didn’t hesitate to follow their family move to Wilmington in 2006. They left dear friends and a dream home in New Jersey, but made new friends easily and found a life that suited them in their new home state.
Owen found many interests and pastimes irresistible. Family and friends were enriched over the years with adventures through, among other things, gastronomy; hiking, especially for mushroom collection; apple picking and cidering; gardening and rock tumbling; bee culture and birding; wood BBQ; tennis; coin collecting; fruit and Christmas tree orcharding; antique-clock collecting; preserving local history of Ralston, New Jersey; long-term investing; and travels and exploration of special places on vacations.
Owen will be remembered for living his life with gusto and curiosity; sharing his passions with others; for his humor, which was often self-deprecating, as he didn’t want to take himself too seriously; for being authentic, original, gregarious and social; for being unworried about appearances; for being a planner, thinker and researcher; for his interest in family heritage and family cohesion; for “talk is cheap, actions have meaning”; for his stoicism in the face of challenges; and for his charity to others and causes. Owen is also remembered for his honesty, integrity and strong self-sufficiency.
Owen is survived by his son, Tom, and his wife, Susannah, of Wilmington, and their children, Isabel and Luke; daughter, Jeanette, and her partner, Roger Cook, also of Wilmington. Owen is also survived by loving siblings, Gladys and Peter, and family of Sarasota, Florida.
At the end of his life, Owen found a spiritual home at the Episcopal Church in his final neighborhood, St. John’s Episcopal Church. The family thanks the St. John’s pastor and community for their kindness to and acceptance of Owen and his family. The family also extends gratitude to Lower Cape Fear LifeCare for attending to the needs of Owen and Rose in their final, most difficult months.
Due to COVID-19 limitations, a private memorial service will be held Friday April 3, at Andrews Mortuary, 1617 Market St., Wilmington. Owen would have shared the request made by his wife Rose, “It is my wish that…my resting place will be in the hearts and souls of those who loved me and the caring and goodness they pass on to others along the way of life. Instead of flowers, a coffin, a gravesite, give a memorial in my memory or plant some trees somewhere.” The family invites donations to Lower Cape Fear LifeCare, the American Kidney Fund or donations of trees through Arbor Day Foundation.
Share online condolences with the family at Andrews Mortuary & Crematory.