Charlie was born in Benton, Arkansas August 25, 1934, to Pauline and Orville Dobbs. He inherited the creativity and skills of his carpenter father and seamstress mother, which he used to lay the foundation of his life. He honed his leadership skills as an Eagle Scout and as State Master Councilor of DeMolay, which helped him earn admittance to the U. S. Naval Academy, the first from Saline County. At USNA, his company mates called him Homer and became lifelong friends, especially Jake Reed, Marty Finnerty and Charlie Pease.
Charlie constructed his career as a telecommunication engineer after his time in the Navy and Reserves where he served honorably aboard the USS Lloyd Thomas. Concurrently he built a close-knit family, but always welcomed friends, neighbors, Midshipmen whom they sponsored, his sons-in-law and their families with open arms. Betsy and Charlie always enjoyed hosting parties in the homes they remodeled themselves and decorated with care.
He retired from Southwestern Bell Telephone Co. bisected by a stint with Bell Laboratories, continuing to consult in retirement. Charlie enhanced his life with hobbies (model railroading, picture framing), added an advanced degree from Washington University, captained his favorite sailboat, the Sea Hog, served his community as a Presbyterian deacon and Sunday school teacher, taught outdoor skills to countless Girl Scouts, and volunteered on the mountain at Breckenridge Ski Resort for many ski seasons. Retirement in Annapolis allowed Charlie to varnish his life as a member of the Sailing Club of the Chesapeake, an active member of the USNA Alumni Association (Rise and Shine with ’59!), serving in several positions including President of the New Providence Club (NPC). The final polish was seeing his grandson be inducted into the Class of 2025 at USNA.
He is survived by his wife, Betsy, with whom he had a 65-year love affair, daughters Kathy (Ted) Wade of Fayetteville, Arkansas, and Patty (Steve) Hodges of Gilford, New Hampshire. He is also survived by his grandson, MIDN 3/C Tanner Wade of Annapolis and a niece, Debbie Smith. Those he welcomed into his circle include Matthew (Melissa) Wade, Brian (Alex) Hodges, Karen and Robert James.
Even in his final year at Ginger Cove, Charlie radiated good will and humanity to his neighbors and caregivers. We are so grateful he lived his life with joy and purpose and left it without suffering and with dignity.
Funeral service was Thursday, December 15, 10:30 am at St. Andrews Chapel, U. S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, and interment in the Naval Academy Columbarium immediately following. Memorials were suggested to be sent to: The Heritage Memory Care at Ginger Cove, or St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church, both in Annapolis.
Charlie and Betsy attended all the LT Reunions until the last few years when he had health issues. They hosted our Annapolis reunion in April 2004. Charlie was a Gunnery Officer 1960-63.