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An extraordinary journey on this earth came to a close with the passing of Charles Orval Engelken, age 48, of Overland Park, Kan., on Saturday, September 3, 2011. He was born on July 14, 1963, in Kansas City, Kan., the son of Verna Jean (Lewis) and Orval Charles "Skeeter" Engelken. Charles was a 1981 graduate of Center High School and earned a B.A. in Business Administration and Management at Webster University. President and partner of Wall-Ties & Forms, Inc., former board member and active supporter of the Concrete Foundations Association, and managing partner of several successful businesses, he started his career at Ford Credit. Charles was an exceptional entrepreneur and an avid traveler who visited nearly 100 countries through work and with his family. He always had a colorful tale to tell of his amazing worldwide adventures. His love of international travel began after high school when he joined the Marines, proudly serving as a Marine Security Guard at U.S. Embassies in Paris, France, and Zagreb, Yugoslavia. Charles was a generous, selfless individual who placed the interests of others above his own. His joyous personality and passion for life were exceeded only by his love and devotion for his cherished wife and children. He married Pamela Cooke on Jan. 30, 1988, in Overland Park. In addition to Pam, survivors include his beloved son, Michael Engelken; adored daughter, Jaimie Engelken; brother, Carl (Michelle) Engelken; mother, Verna Jean Engelken and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his father. A celebration of Charles's life will be held at 2 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, at Olathe Bible Church. Burial to follow at Mount Moriah Cemetery. Visitation is 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 22, at the church. Memorial contributions honoring Charles's good works in his industry may be made to the Concrete Foundations Association Education and Research Foundation, 113 First St. NW, Mount Vernon, IA 52314 or (319) 895-6940. Share online condolences with the family at
Published in Kansas City Star from Sep. 18 to Sep. 21, 2011.
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