Carl Kenyon Panero, 87

Thu, 08/22/2019 - 3:30pm
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A longtime resident of Block Island, Carl Panero died on August 18, 2019 at age 87. Carl loved the people and places of Block Island and designed his own house on Cooneymus Road in 1974. He was an enthusiastic cruising sailor, fisherman, cook, and a Governor of the Block Island Club. Starting in the late 1970s he helped secure the purchase and donation of the Win Dodge Preserve to the Block Island Conservancy. He spent many happy summers on-island with Jim and Dorothy Shipley, his ex-wife’s parents, who maintained a house near the Southeast Lighthouse, and with his close friends on the island in the off season.     

Born in New York City on May 7, 1932 to Carl Sylvius Panero and Jeanne Duncan Kenyon, Carl Panero studied at the New School for Social Research, received a Bachelor of Architecture degree from Pratt University, and did graduate work in Public Administration at New York University. 

From 1954 to 1956, he served in the United States Army as a fire-direction control specialist in a guided-missile battalion. In 1958, working from Point Barrow, Alaska, he traveled throughout the Arctic inspecting construction of the Distant Early Warning (DEW) Line through an engineering-services contract with the International Telephone and Telegraph Corporation. 

In 1959 he joined the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and worked on the planning and development of LaGuardia, Newark, and Kennedy Airports. Starting in 1962, as part of the Port Authority’s Project Management group, he worked with Minoru Yamasaki as Senior Staff Architect for the development of the World Trade Center. 

In 1971, he joined the New York State Urban Development Corporation (UDC) as the Director of Design and Engineering for its $1.5 billion construction program and was involved in the residential redevelopment of Roosevelt Island. Following a period as a private practitioner and architectural consultant, in 1986 he became the Project Manager for the rehabilitation of Carnegie Hall and, later, Rockefeller Center. Thereafter he headed up the real estate divisions of UJA Federation and Long Island Jewish Hospital until his retirement. 

From his marriage to Ann Shipley, Carl is survived by his son, James Panero; his daugher-in-law, Dara Mandle, and their children, Lily and Augustus. From a previous marriage, he is survived by his daughter, Christine Krom, his son-in-law, William Krom, and step-children Andre Jones and Harry Nyberg. He is also survived by his two sisters, Dianne Butcher and Roxanne Panero. He was predeceased by his half-brother, Carl Cestari.

The Panero family extends their thanks for the concern that islanders showed to Carl following a stroke in 2006. They are immensely grateful to Barbara Watrous, his nurse, for a decade of devotion to his recovery and well-being.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Carl’s name to the Block Island Conservancy. P. O. Box 84, Block Island, RI 02807; (401) 466.3111. A memorial reception is planned at the Panero home on Cooneymus Road on Saturday, Aug. 24 at 4 p.m.