Caryl Louise Maniscalco of St. Helena, California, passed away peacefully in her sleep at the home of her first son, David Boies, overlooking the Swan River in Big Fork, Montana on Sunday, September 9. Caryl was 76 years old. While her loss was sudden, Caryl died of natural causes and left this earth with grace and dignity.
Caryl was born August 5, 1942, Caryl Louise Elwell, in Glendale, California. She dedicated her life to her children, grandchildren and to helping others.
Deeply loved grandmother, mother and fiercely loyal and giving friend to all she met, Caryl was a quiet powerhouse of a woman. A maverick, she raised her four children on her own while operating a small hometown cafe in the Sonoma County village of Monte Rio. She instilled in her children a sense of ethics, responsibility and self-reliance through her example. Despite difficult challenges, she provided stability to her family, friends and community. Regardless of the circumstances, Caryl exuded an infectious optimism and was always there for her children, grandchildren, or anyone who needed her.
Caryl was raised in Southern California. She graduated from Fullerton High School. She then supported her husband, David Boies, and two first children working as a switchboard operator, among other early jobs. She further supported her first husband through college and then law school in Chicago. When her first marriage ended, she moved back to California where her second two children were born. Her second husband was Peter Maniscalco.
Eventually, she opened a small restaurant in Monte Rio. While operating the restaurant and raising her children, Caryl aspired to fulfill her dreams further. She studied for and attained first her real estate sales license and then her real estate broker’s license. She set an example as a life-long learner, going on to fulfill her life-long dream of being an attorney. She attended Empire Law School in Sonoma County and graduated before her children were out of the house. She became a lawyer — passing the bar exam on the first try — in 1987.
Caryl took up family law because she knew the pain and struggle of leading a broken home. She worked with legal aid to help those in most need. She also practiced real estate law. She was a font of knowledge and could answer just about any question on those special areas of law that would be posed to her. She loved wine and California’s wine country and was house counsel for Hawk and Horse Vineyards for the past 18 years.
In spite of her many accomplishments, Caryl was not prideful. She downplayed her achievements and always put others before herself, especially her grandchildren.
Caryl’s chief passion was her eleven grandchildren. With family spread all over the U.S. and abroad, Caryl kept up with each and every one of her children and grandchildren’s lives and maintained close relationships with all. In fact, just about everyone who met her under the age of 30 called her “Grandma Caryl.” The rest of us called her “Mom.” The archetypal mother, she would fight any battle for her children or grandchildren. There was only one side — their side. In private, she would not shrink from correcting her family with a gentle strength, but where family was concerned, against Grandma Caryl, the outside world did not stand a chance! She led through quiet fortitude and by example.
Rising from virtually nothing, she attained all of her dreams and inspired each of her children to do the same. All of her children achieved college degrees and followed her advice to believe in yourself and all things are possible. She could be feisty, opinionated and fierce but she was even more loving, caring, compassionate and intellectually brilliant. She would stand her ground but was also quick to forgive. She would sacrifice her needs for those of her children and grandchildren — and even strangers. Caryl was deeply human, kind and approachable. She had a wonderful sense of humor and was quick to laugh. Everyone who knew her loved her.
Caryl loved to travel to exotic places and had amazing opportunities to see the world. She was an avid 49er football and San Francisco Giants fan. She enjoyed cooking, sewing, antiquing and playing piano. She founded several small businesses including two restaurants, a real estate brokerage and a candy store. She ran for judge in Sonoma County, receiving 40% of the County-wide vote against an entrenched incumbent. Most of all, she loved to attend any event in which her grandchildren featured — from California high school rodeo to soccer, to Yale baseball, to St. Helena Montessori School Christmas pageants.
Caryl was preceded in her ascent to heaven by her beloved daughter, Caryl Louise Boies, an attorney in her own right, whom she loved with all her heart. One small comfort is that their two spirits may be seated together at the right hand of the Father.
Caryl is survived by her remaining three children: David Boies III, Tracey Allynne Hawkins (Mitch Hawkins), Matthew Patrick Maniscalco (Tania Maniscalco), along with her eleven grandchildren, Autumn Brook Turley, David Boies IV, Marie Louise Maniscalco, Robert Buckley Boies, Virginia Louise Boies, Hannah Maniscalco, Katherine Maniscalco, Samuel Boies, Francesca Michelle Hawkins, Nina Pauline Hawkins and David Baibula.
She has left a space for all to fill in caring for one another. She would be honored if we look for ways to be of service and fill those needs in her honor.
Caryl’s remains will be placed at rest at the St. Helena Public Cemetery at 11:00 a.m. on November 10. A celebration of Caryl’s life will be held at The American Legion in St. Helena, immediately following. All are welcome.
Please honor Caryl’s memory by donating to Caryl’s Kids, a charity established in the loving memory of her daughter, Caryl L. Boies: Caryl’s Kids, C/O Sigrid McCawley, BSFLLP, 401 Las Olas Blvd. Ste. 1200, Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301.
Cards, condolences and remembrances of Caryl’s life may be sent to Tracey Hawkins, P.O.B. 324, Calistoga CA 94515.
Caryl wanted to be remembered in joy and beauty! Please find a moment to be joyous in her memory today!