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BUCYRUS: Charles D. Collene, 88, of Bucyrus died peacefully Thursday morning, May 1, 2014 at his home.
He was born in Bucyrus on August 12, 1925 to the late James and Rosa (Critzer) Collene and attended Holy Trinity and Bucyrus High School before answering his country's call to serve in the US Navy during WW2. Mostly near Trinidad working with a blimp squadron. Due to his service, he earned an honorary diploma in 2002. He met Elsie Clark at the Bucyrus Restaurant where she worked and after a brief courtship, they were married October 20, 1948. She preceded him in death November 28, 2008.
Chuck worked for The Timken Co. for 30 years, retiring in 1983. He will be remembered for being able to fix just about anything and striking up a conversation anywhere he went. He took up flying and purchased a small plane he flew out of the Bucyrus Airport. He loved hanging out at the hanger and going out to eat with the ROMEO Club, of which he was a charter member. While at home, he enjoyed adding to his Santa Claus collection, took great care of his lawn and flower beds and loved the companionship of many lapdogs over the years, the most recent being Katie.
Most of all, Chuck enjoyed traveling, his big Irish family gatherings and always doing something for others. He and Elsie were able to see much of the US and Canada while pulling their Airstream trailer. They lived in Florida for 10 years, taking in the warmth and fishing, but family drew them home to Ohio where they could go to the basketball games and track meets of their grandchildren. Chuck held a number of memberships over the years including Moose Lodge, Elks Lodge, life memberships in AmVets and VFW and recently joined the congregation of Scioto UMC. A proud patriot, Chuck raised a new American flag every May 12 in honor of his son, Charles Edward's death in Vietnam.
Chuck is survived by four children, James (Cheryl) Collene, Charlette (Gary) Brown, Michael (Joni) Collene and Patty (Jeff) Thompson; 23 grandchildren; 49 great grandchildren; best friend and brother-in-law, Wayne (Chris) Clark; and special friend, Arleta Phenicie.
In addition to his parents, Chuck was preceded in death by his wife of 60 years, Elsie Collene; son, Charles Edward Collene; two great grandchildren, Ethan Dendinger and Madeline Collene; and siblings, Robert, James, Donald, Bud and Virginia.
The Collene family will celebrate Chuck's life on Monday, May 5 at Scioto United Methodist Church, 5196 Ohio 4, north of Bucyrus. Friends may call from 10 am-12 Noon when the service will begin with Rev. Glory Geib officiating. The service will conclude with honors by the US Navy Honor Guard followed by a luncheon.
Memorial donations can be given to Air Explorer Post 117, Honor Flight Network or
through Wise Funeral Service in Bucyrus. Memories can be shared on Chuck's obituary page at www.wisefuneral.com.
Wise Funeral Service
129 W Warren St
Bucyrus, OH 44820
Published in the Telegraph-Forum on May 2, 2014