Marvin E. Carolina, Sr.
Marvin E. Carolina Sr., the only child of Ellis and Fannie Carolina, was born July 31, 1931 in McKeesport, Pennsylvania. Although he was an only child, he spent a good deal of time with his first cousin, Margret Kelly Banks, and her siblings. Marvin accepted Christ at an early age and was raised in New Hope Baptist Church. He graduated from Braddock High School in the spring of 1949, then joined the United States Air Force on his 18th birthday in 1949. Marvin met Jeanette King when they were children at New Hope Baptist Church and married her on October 2, 1959. Together they had two children, Marcia and Marvin, Jr.
When Marvin enlisted in the Air Force, he hoped to be able to combine his love of music and playing the saxophone with serving his country in the Air Force Band. Instead, upon completion of basic training, he learned he was assigned to Clark Air Base in the Philippines. He spent most of his career at Greater Pittsburgh International Airport where he served as OJT-Training, Range Instructor, First Sergeant, and Superintendent of the 459 Air Police Squadron and the 911 Security Police Flight. One of his many awards included Outstanding Air Force Reserve Security Police Senior NCO (1972, 1978, and 1988). At the time, he was the only to receive that award and honor three times. In recognition of his commitment and service, the Marvin E. Carolina Outstanding Security Police Award was regularly awarded to one person in his Airport unit. Marvin spoke fondly of his years in the military and wore his Korean War Veteran hat the pride. After 42 years of service and rising to the rank of Senior Master Sergeant (SMSgt), he retired on August 1, 1991.
He began his professional career with Continental Insurance Company where he worked as an underwriter. He developed a reputation for his strong work ethic and for "getting the job done". He completed a successful 40-year corporate career with Continental and Marsh & McLennan Company. Shortly after retiring from the Continental, Marvin had the opportunity to become a business-owner and entrepreneur. He started Carolina Insurance and maintained that business until December 2018.
A portion of Marvin's community service was through the Livingstones Lodge #51. He was recognized for his commitment, service, leadership and many accomplishments, and ascended to the position of Honorary Grand Master of the Most Worshipful Hiram Grand Lodge A.F. & A.M., Inc. While he appreciated the recognition, he was most proud of his efforts to lead the Lodge in their efforts to serve a holiday meal one Saturday in December, to anyone in the community who wished to join them, for ten years.
In all Marvin did, it was evident he was a man of God. He became a deacon on March 5, 1980 and an ordained minister in 1997. He graduated from The Moody Bible Institute on May 15, 2004, where he majored in Adult Bible Studies. Always active in the church, he assumed a leadership role and served as an Ordained Elder, Assistant Pastor, and Christian Education Superintendent at Zoe Community Church. In "retirement" he became an instructor at the Willa M. Johnson School of Bible & Ministry where each semester, he sponsored one student in one class.
Survivors include his children, Marcia Carolina-Payne, Marvin Carolina, Jr. (Michelle); his grandchildren, Carolina Payne, Kayla Tyus, Ellis and Ethan Carolina; his great grandchildren Joseph and Arielle Fisher and many other family and friends.
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