By Jamie (Cluna) Barbera
Carman Cluna—Best known to his Drum and Bugle Corps comrades for his undying passion and never-ending quest for excellence…and his unprecedented dedication to advancing the Drum and Bugle Corps activity to the highest of standards. Although Carman’s life undeniably revolved around his intense love affair with his Drum Corps, his overwhelming pride and unwavering devotion for his “other family” was not to be rivaled. Brenda, his loving wife of 38 years, daughters Jamie (& husband Al) and Susan (& husband Rick), and four immensely adored grandchildren (Jackie, John, Matthew and Emily) were my Dad’s pride and joy.
Aside from the discipline and competitive nature that my Dad has instilled in me, he has taught me that loyalty, self-sacrifice and unfailing enthusiasm will enable me to achieve my most fantastic dreams—but that love and honesty would allow me to live far beyond those dreams. Through his brother-like camaraderie with life-long friends such as Hy, “Sonny”, Tommy. Lefty and Pepe and Joe Genaro, my dad has taught me about teamwork and devotion.
To this day, my children remember "Poppy" playing "peek-a-boo", and still enjoy singing "Red River Valley", nd “Poppy’s version” of the alphabet with a full-fledged Drum Corps-like finale. He has given us not only song, but wit, laughter, determination and character. My husband still scoffs at the stories he hears of the “strict disciplinarian”…as he remembers my Dad as a sensitive, sometimes silly man who once rode a young child’s bicycle (tassels and all) to the store to purchase a pack of smokes when his car was unavailable! I cherish the many nights we stayed up almost to daybreak listening to ghost stories, laughing uncontrollably at Peter Sellers in the Pink Panther and, of course, the Sunday ritual of eggs and home fries on the BBQ! My Dad lost many a nights sleep assisting me with homework assignments…and without his encouragement and sheer pride, completing my Doctoral Program would have only been a dream.
Until recently, it had been my impression that few others had the privilege of experiencing the “other” side of my Dad…the profoundly proud, fun-loving and tremendously caring man that has made not only the Drum Corps Community, but this entire world a better place. As I peruse this website (frequently!), I am touched tremendously to know the true impact he has made. Our family would like to thank the many whose lives he touched for sharing their profound experiences and heartwarming stories. Kudos to Reginald, Ronald and Harold for your hard work and dedication, and for creating this tremendous forum for friendships to rekindle and memories to be relived!