Anita Caruso was born and raised in Kansas City, Missouri, where her husband Sam began his railroad career. After his home terminal was changed from Kansas City to Osawatomie, Kansas, they moved to Olathe, Kansas, in April 1980. She has been a member of the Auxiliary since 1980 when she joined the Helen Gould Auxiliary 235 in Osawatomie, Kansas. Here she came to know the true meaning of the word “sisterhood.” As a new railroad wife, she learned much from her auxiliary sisters about railroad lingo and railroad life, and how to run a household with a husband working an unpredictable schedule and being gone much of the time.
Eight years later, she and Sam moved to Omaha, Nebraska, where there was no local auxiliary, and she became a member-at-large. In 1995, she founded River City Auxiliary 12 in the Omaha, Nebraska/Council Bluffs, Iowa area. On a local level, she has served as President, Vice President, Legislative Representative, Correspondent, and Past President.
In 1997, Anita was appointed as Alternate Treasurer of the Grand International Auxiliary to the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers (GIA) by International President Ruth Pillman-Windham. After serving in that position for four years, she was elected International Secretary of the GIA in September 2001, and held that position until October 2010. During that time, at the 2006 International Convention of the BLET and the Auxiliary, the GIA became a national organization and the name was changed to the BLET Auxiliary. At the 2010 National Auxiliary Convention, Sister Caruso was elected by acclamation to the position of BLET Auxiliary National President. As of the close of the Second Quadrennial National Auxiliary Convention this past October 1, 2014, she is now known as the immediate Past National President.
Anita and Sam and have two great children: Paula Jo Baggiani and Sam Leonard Caruso. Paula and her husband Spencer have blessed them with three grandsons, Dominic, Sam, and Luca. Sam Leonard is single and worked for Union Pacific Railroad for seven years as a clerk, and then transferred in 2010 to a Union Pacific subsidiary known as Streamline. In 2013, he transferred to Union Pacific Distribution Services. Both of her children reside in Omaha, Nebraska.
Anita feels that joining the Auxiliary was one of the best choices she ever made and has been one of the bright spots of her husband’s 35-year career with the railroad. She is grateful to the Past Presidents of the organization whose encouragement and guidance have helped her immensely along with way. She is also eternally grateful for the many friendships that she and Sam have made through their involvement with the BLET and the BLET Auxiliary.Anita Caruso
7660 S. 162nd Street
Omaha, Nebraska 68136
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