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Isaac Allen "Ike" Charlton III


1939 - 2020
Isaac Allen "Ike" Charlton III Obituary
Isaac Allen "Ike" Charlton III died peacefully at the Denali Center on Feb. 5, 2020, in Fairbanks. He was 80 years old.
Born in 1939 to Leroy and Kathryn Charlton, he was raised in Salem, Illinois. Ike moved to Fairbanks in 1976 to work as an accountant for the University of Alaska System. He was named risk manager for the UA System in 1978, and was director of risk management from 1984 until his retirement in 1995. He developed and managed the University of Alaska risk management program, saving the system hundreds of thousands of dollars in insurance costs while strengthening and improving its insurance and risk management programs.
As a risk manager, Ike knew better than most the dangers of daily life, and his concern for the safety and well-being of his family, friends and community was at the heart of his countless hours of public service.
A founding member of the Fairbanks Racing Lions, Ike played a key role in promoting fun and safe drag races in Fairbanks and throughout Alaska. At races, he was often in charge of the pit, inspecting vehicles for safety. He also built his own drag cars, beginning with a 1963 Chevrolet Nova and upgrading to a yellow and red 1984 Camaro Z28 called "Risky Business." Ike could hit 145 mph in the Camaro, clearing a quarter-mile strip in 10 seconds.
After heart problems curtailed his ability to race, Ike switched his focus to getting more young drivers involved in racing, including building junior dragsters for the Racing Lions and racing with son Brian in a 1975 Trans Am they rebuilt together.
Ike was a strict but supportive father. His favorite weekends were spent fishing or shooting rifles at the gun range with his children. He attended scores of ski events to support Brian, a skilled racer, and loved bringing him along on moose hunting trips. He helped his daughter, Becky, earn a Girl Scout badge by letting her program his office's punch card computer and rebuilt a 1974 Chevrolet Nova for her first car.
Always the protector, Ike was an early adopter of car seats and ran the Fairbanks Lions Club's low-cost car seat program for 10 years. Ike's other volunteer activities included helping teachers at University Park School, serving as treasurer for the North Star Council on Aging, and serving on the board of directors for the Arctic Winter Games Team Alaska.
He also provided his services as a certified public account through the IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program for more than 30 years, preparing taxes for free for low-income residents in Indiana and Alaska.
Ike received a B.S. in business education from Eastern Illinois University in 1964, on his second attempt at college. The first time he studied engineering but quit to become a farmer after earning Ds in all his classes. During his second go, Ike discovered his talent for accounting when his roommates put him in charge of the house finances.
He began his accounting career at Purdue University, which is where he met his wife Charlotte Charlton (née Roellig). They were married in 1969 and divorced in 1998.
Before moving to Alaska, he also held accounting and business management positions at Indiana University and Indiana Vocational Technical College. Ike earned an M.S. in educational administration from Indiana University in 1971. He also served as a mechanic in the Indiana Air National Guard from 1965 to 1970.
His lifelong love of drag racing was born on his family's farm, where Ike learned to tinker with engines and drive a tractor before age 10. His fondest childhood memory was winning the regional spelling bee in 1953, earning $20 in prizes and a trip to the semi-final competition in St. Louis.
Ike was preceded in death by his brother David and his sister Mikell Telford. He is survived by his brother Steve and his sister Ellen Shanafelt; his former wife Charlotte Charlton; daughter Becky Oskin; son Brian Charlton and daughter-in-law Michelle Charlton; granddaughters Emma Charlton and Julia Oskin; and grandsons Noah Oskin and Logan Charlton.
The family wishes to thank the Denali Center for the excellent care they provided for Ike, especially Colette, Don, Carol, Pastor Tim and the rest of the kind staff.
A memorial service will be held this summer.
Published in Daily News-Miner on Feb. 23, 2020
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