Charlene Bearden Bridges
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Charlene was born in Springfield, MO, June 7, 1945 to CC and Amanda Bearden and passed away April 18, 2013. She was a lifelong member of High Street Baptist Church and a 1963 graduate of Hillcrest High School. She was very proud to be a member of The Ladies of '63 Breakfast Club who meet monthly and also raise money to buy Hillcrest yearbooks for students who otherwise wouldn't have one.
Many people remember Charlene as their grocery checker at Consumers Market where she was employed for thirty-four years and also where she met that Bruce Bridges boy. Bruce and Charlene were married on August 26, 1968, in Harrison, AR, by Justice of the Peace T.P. Saunders. This marriage produced two great but also very ornery kids named Bret and Barbara.
Charlene only focused on two things her entire life, God and Family. She never missed a ballgame or school function. She made many Halloween costumes, dresses for school plays, and every birthday party for her children and grandchildren wasn't complete without one of her beautifully decorated cakes. As many will attest, nothing compared to her home cooked meals. She was passionate about life. A classy lady, honest and fun loving, who always put everyone else ahead of herself. She loved to go to the sprint car and midget races. She was a tough ol' girl who didn't mind "gettin' a little dirt 'throwed' on her". However, she was quick to admit she wasn't so much a race fan but rather a Bruce fan. Everyone should be fortunate enough to have a child, sibling, spouse, mom and grandma like Charlene.
Charlene was preceded in passing by her folks, an infant sister, Faith, and her in-laws Herbert and Dorothy Bridges whom she always said treated her like their own daughter.
She is survived by her husband Bruce, son Bret (Tracey), daughter Barbara Brown (Clayton), four brothers; Francis, Harvey (Bonnie), Johnny, and Gerald (Jann), two sisters; Christy Colley (Marvin), and Cindy McMillian (Dale), two sisters-in-law; Sharan Chittenden (Michael), Mary Bridges, and brother-in-law Tom Bridges (Ann), grandchildren: Trevor, Ali, Hunter, Quinn, Blair, Jazmine, Nancy Pikul (Frank), Brandy, Jordan. Others include Ricky Icenhower, a host of nieces and nephews, friends, neighbors, and several troublemakers.
Charlene has been cremated and is resting at the Missouri Veterans Cemetery. Per her instructions there are no services, no flowers or donations. Charlene says, "Do something to help someone and think of me". Giving beyond her last breath, she donated both corneas to the Heartland Lion Eye Bank.
P.S. If you happen to walk by a slot machine, you might drop in a couple bucks and play the "ching ching" for Charlene.
Published in the News-Leader from Apr. 24 to Apr. 28, 2013