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Gov. Cargo lies in state in New Mexico

Published 5:12pm Thursday, July 11, 2013


Former New Mexico governor David F. Cargo, who was born in Dowagiac, died Friday, July 5, 2013. He was 84.

Cargo, the eldest of three children born to Francis and Mary (Harton) Cargo, spent the first 17 years of his life in Dowagiac before his family moved to Jackson.

New Mexico’s youngest governor at age 37, laid in state in the rotunda of the State Capitol in Sante Fe on Thursday.

Cargo, who lived in Albuquerque, served two terms as governor, 1967-1971.

“Lonesome Dave” started the first U.S. state film commission, generating millions of dollars in revenue for his state.

He established ties to Hollywood and was even invited to appear in films, including a cameo appearance in the 1969 Western “The Good Guys and the Bad Guys,” and “Bunny O’Hare” in 1971 with Bette Davis and Ernest Borgnine.

Cargo, who earned his bachelor’s degree, master’s degree in public administration and law degree from the University of Michigan, counted as accomplishments creating a Human Rights Commission and numerous libraries throughout New Mexico.

Cargo served two years in the U.S. Army during Korea. He moved to New Mexico to practice law in 1957. He was a state representative from 1963 to 1966.

Surviving are: five children, Veronica, David, Patrick, Elena and Eamon; five grandchildren, Kevin, Jordan Patrick, Reese, Maddie and Kieran; his brother, Gerald Cargo, and wife, Barbara, of Syracuse, N.Y.

He was preceded in death by his former wife, Ida Jo Anaya, and brother, John Cargo.

A memorial service will follow in the rotunda at 4 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Friday, July 12, at 10 a.m. at Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi in Santa Fe. He will be laid to rest in Santa Fe National Cemetery following Mass.

Memorial contributions may be made to the New Mexico Library Foundation, P.O. Box 30572, Albuquerque, NM 87109-0572 or “Friends of” your local library.



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