Former Glendale Mayor Carl W. Raggio died on June 20 at age 94.
A California native, Raggio moved to Glendale in the early 1960s where he became an active community member in the city, serving as a member of the Glendale Unified School District’s Board of Education from 1973-1985 and the Glendale City Council from 1985 to 1993. During his time on Council he served one-year terms as mayor in 1988 and 1992.
At its Tuesday night meeting, City Council recognized the life of Raggio and adjourned in his honor.
“Carl was a force in our city,” Councilwoman Paula Devine said. “He was an amazing, kind, brilliant man and a wonderful family-man and really supported this community even when he moved out to Valencia. We’ve lost another great man.”
Through his work with the city of Glendale, Raggio helped form the Tri-City Transportation Coalition for transportation improvements in Burbank, Glendale and Pasadena. He chaired the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority for 15 years, and in 2013, he was appointed to the Glendale Redevelopment Successor Agency where he served as chairman of the Oversight Board.
“He was Glendale through and through, someone who believed in the best of this community, and he will be missed,” said Councilman Ardy Kassakhian, who first met Raggio as a 4th-grader at R.D. White Elementary School on a field trip to Council’s chambers. Kassakhian went on to say that he maintained a relationship with Raggio and the two spoke just a few weeks ago.
In addition to his work with Glendale’s School Board and Council, he worked with the California Institute of Technology, Jet Propulsion Laboratory program as a design engineer during the beginning of its involvement in spacecraft research, development and design. During his 39 years at JPL, Raggio worked in the design and deployment of several landmark space crafts including Explorer 1, the first satellite launched by the United States into space in 1958.
He is survived by his wife of 72 years, Lynne; his two sons, Carl Raggio III and his wife Mary; Paul Anthony and his fiancé Natalya; and daughter Lisa and her husband Greg Patterson, as well as 15 grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.
First published in the July 1print issue of the Glendale News-Press.