CHARLES ZELFORD NORTH
October 12, 1923 ˜ October 19, 2020
Charles Zelford North passed away on Oct. 19, 2020, one week after his 97th birthday, in Kalama, WA, surrounded by his loving children. He is now reunited in heaven with the love his life, Shirley, his wife of 65 years.
Charles was born at home in Selmer, TN, to Carlos and Dola North. His mother passed away when he was 12 years old and his grandpa and grandma raised him and his siblings. It was a hard life and they didn’t have much money, but they always had food on the table provided by the land they worked and the animals they raised. He had a lot of great memories from those simple times.
After graduating from Michie High School in McNary County, TN, in 1942, he joined the US Coast Guard Reserve. World War II was in full swing and he was soon deployed to active duty status with the US Navy. He was at sea until the end of the war in 1945.
A few years later he met his beautiful wife while working at a warehouse. They married after a short courtship and had four children. In the early 1960s, jobs were scarce in the South and, with some coaxing from his brother, who had moved to Portland, OR, he packed the family and whatever else he could fit in the car and moved to the Pacific NW. His brother (Howard) and family took us all in until dad could find work and housing.
He soon landed a job with Pacific Power & Light working on the line crew. A few years later, we welcomed our little brother, Chris, into the world. He worked in Cougar, WA, where he became a hydroelectric operator at Swift Creek Dam. He retired from PP&L in 1988.
Our dad was a true southern gentleman until the very end. We will miss his stories, his kindness, his love for casinos and chocolate. But, most of all we will miss his love and devotion to our family.
Charles was preceded in death by his wife, Shirley; son, Dan; two sisters and two brothers.
He is survived by his children, Tom (Cheryl), Teresa Frick (Tom), Cecelia Blodgette (Bob) and Chris (Julia); nine grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.
There will be a viewing at Vancouver Funeral Chapel, 110 E. 12th St., Vancouver, WA 98660 on Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020, from 5-7 p.m. for those that want to pay their respects. Masks are required.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, there will be a private family only service, on Friday, Oct. 30, 2020.
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