Danny Carretta, the son of Italian immigrants Mauro and Lucia Carretta, was born in Chicago, April 27, 1933.
During this time, the Great Depression was having a detrimental effect on the US workforce and economy, prompting Danny (age 2) and his family to relocate to Lavello, Southern Italy. There Danny studied up to high school, worked in his parents' grocery store and sometimes helped harvest fruit and olives from his father’s orchard.
By the age of 17 (1950), Danny returned to the US, and joined his brother, John, in Pittsburgh in hopes of helping him start a general contracting business. Eventually, Danny’s sister and parents followed him and his brother to Pittsburgh. Initially, Danny learned the trade of construction doing brick laying, framing and cabinet making. He also worked briefly in a steel mill and even sold guardian ware, putting on cooking demonstrations with his sister, Antoinette.
In 1954, Danny was drafted into the US Army and served two years at Fort Buchanan, Puerto Rico. It was in Puerto Rico that Danny quickly learned the Spanish language which earned him the right to say he was tri-lingual speaking, Italian, English and Spanish fluently.
After being honorably discharged from the Army, Danny returned to Pittsburgh to continue working with his brother John doing general contracting. In 1959, Danny took a vacation with his parents to California and quickly realized that Pittsburgh was for the birds. In 1960, Danny left his brother John and followed his sister and parents to Downey.
He initially worked in construction but eventually landed a job at Robertshaw, a small factory in Long Beach. While working at Robertshaw, Danny became friends with an Italian man who showed him a picture of his niece, Maria Concetta, who resided in Italy. Danny began to write Maria Concetta and after about 6 months flew her to California so they could meet. Danny and Maria Concetta married in 1963 and had two sons, Robert in 1965 and Maurice in 1967.
Eventually Danny and Maria Concetta divorced after 10 years of marriage. Danny raised his two sons, Robert and Maurice, while working full time. In 1979 Danny remarried and divorced again in 1991.
Danny spent the last 20 of his working years at McDonnell Douglas and then Boeing aircraft from which he retired.
During the last 25 years, after being influenced by his son Robert, Danny made a decision to give his life to Christ and to become a born again Christian. Danny then became a member of Life Center Church in Lakewood and quickly became involved in an adult Sunday school class.
He also served in ushers ministry and the churches very active seniors group doing various outings and outreaches. Danny served for several years as secretary of treasury for AARP Downey branch as well.
Eventually Danny became ill and was no longer able to drive so he left Life Center Church and became a member of Calvary Chapel Downey, where his son, Maurice (Marites) and grandchildren attended.
Danny spent his last three years residing with his son Maurice (Marites) and grandchildren, Clarissa (17), Robert (15) and Jonathan (14).
On Dec. 8, 2016, Danny, with his family at his side, passed away.