Charley died on September 4th, 2018, just days after his 94th birthday, at the Powder River Manor where he had resided for four years. The loving care provided by the Manor staff filled his time there with smiles and good memories. The daily visits by his wife Betty and daughter-in-law, Theresa Alderman & her family, brightened his days along with greeting nearly everyone who visited the Manor.
Charley experienced his childhood on his parents’ homestead in the Boyes Community with his eight siblings. He always said he was happy to be a trucker rather than a farmer when he remembered the days of hard work at home. He joined the Navy on June 16, 1944, shipping out for Guam from Camp Mugu at Oxnard, California, on the U. S. General Patrick at the age of 20. He operated heavy equipment, loading and unloading planes and other equipment from aircraft carriers. He said the best day of his deployment was when they received news that the Japanese had surrendered, ending World War II. Charley always had misgivings about missing his mother’s funeral in 1945 shortly before he was honorably discharged in August 1946. In 2010, Charley accompanied his son, Vic, back to Guam where they toured the Naval Base and shipyard. He was privileged to visit the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C. with many fellow veterans via the Honor Flight.
Charley was well-known to the community as he was a trucker most of his life; hauling cattle, sheep, grain, hay, gravel and fuel. He memorized phone numbers of many local farmers and ranchers as he hauled their grain or livestock to market season after season, year after year. He missed being behind the wheel of his truck when he retired and always had a story to tell about shoveling grain or gravel and engaging in conversation with customers that he considered being his friends. Charley often reminded his trucking buddies and sons-in-law that he had backed up more miles than they ever drove forward!
Charley married Dolores Knie in 1946 and together they raised five children. They lived in Broadus, Belle Creek and Billings throughout the nearly 40 years they were married. They divorced in 1989 and Dolores passed away in 1997.
In 1989, Charley and Betty Alderman were married and he enjoyed being a member of Betty’s family. They loved to avoid cold weather by spending the winter months in Yuma, Arizona over the past 25 years, where they golfed, played cards and enjoyed new and old friends. Charley loved to dance and he and Betty seldom missed an opportunity to socialize with friends.
Charley leaves his wife Betty; one sister Norma, who lives in Laughlin, NV; two children, DeeDee (Mark) Heinert of Denver; and Mark (Mary) Stabio of Billings; a son-in-law, David Davis and daughter-in-law, MaryAnn Stabio. He loved to spend time with his 12 grandchildren and 9 great-grandchildren and large extended family. Sadly, he was preceded in death by three of his children: Duane in 2008, Cathy in 2016, Victor in 2018, an infant grandson Tony Heinert, his parents and 7 siblings.
A Memorial Service will be held at 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 6th at Faith Bible Church in Broadus. A reception will follow at the Community Center. If desired, memorial donations in Charley’s name can be made to the Powder River Manor or the memorial of your choice.