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Historian Caryl Fowler dies
Caryl Davis Fowler, a longtime Ceres resident who enjoyed studying its history, died Thursday morning following a battle with cancer.

Mrs. Fowler wrote periodically for the Modesto Bee and co-authored "Town of Ceres: A Historical Stroll" in 1985 with Ruth Jorgensen. She was one of the moving forces to prompt the city of Ceres to purchase and renovate the Daniel Whitmore Home.

Many people in Ceres mistakenly believed that Mrs. Fowler was the namesake of Carroll Fowler Elementary School. The school, however, was named for her father-in-law. Carroll Fowler was the father of Caryl's husband, Richard "Hardy" Fowler, who passed away Nov. 2, 2004.

Despite her illness, Mrs. Fowler made an appearance on Nov. 13 at the 50th anniversary of the opening of Carroll Fowler School.

Mrs. Fowler's mother-in-law, Aurelia Whitmore Fowler, was the daughter of Richard K. Whitmore, who followed his brother, Ceres founder Daniel Whitmore, to California in 1856. Richard Whitmore settled in Ceres in 1869 and helped to survey the town site.

Carroll Fowler came to Ceres in 1901 to pursue farming. At the time of his birth, Hardy's parents owned the land on which Smyrna Park and Carroll Fowler Elementary School exists today.

Hardy and Caryl met in Pullman, Wash., while he taught at Washington State College. They were married in 1947. He left the university after 12 years to take over the 40-acre family peach farm on Fowler Road in 1950.

Mrs. Fowler was a charter member of the Harvest Presbyterian Church. She also belonged to the Tuolumne River Lodge for over five decades. She was involved in the Ceres Historical Society as a member.

She leaves behind daughter, Dr. Mary Fowler of Boise, Idaho, and son, Robert Fowler of San Rafael, and two grandchildren.