Carl Dondanville, the fourth of eight children of Emile Dondanville and Marie Schumacher, was born in Newhall, California, May 24, 1893. The year following his birth the family moved to San Gabriel. Carl was baptized Charley Emile at San Gabriel Mission on October 26, 1894.
The 1920 U.S. Census recorded Carl J., age 27, serving as a United States Marine aboard the U.S.S. Wilmington off Shanghai, China. The enumeration date was April 27th.
The family bible notes Carl's date of death as July 8, 1920, in route from the Philippines to Mare Island, California. The bible further notes his length of service as 3 years and 2 months, which would mean that he had joined the Navy in May 1917 and served during World War I. There is no accounting as to whether Carl's death at sea, occurring less than three months after the 1920 Census, was accidental or natural. He was buried at San Gabriel Mission.