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Charles Epperson

1937 - 2019
Charles Epperson Obituary
Charles Epperson

Henderson, KY - Charles Hughes Epperson, age 82, of Henderson, KY, passed away Wednesday, October 23, 2019, at Shemwell Nursing Home under the care of St. Anthony's Hospice. Chuck was born February 2, 1937 in Massillon, Ohio the sixth child and third son of J.B. and Ruth Epperson. The family relocated to Winchester, KY, where J.B. opened Epperson Furniture Store. Chuck was the baby of the family and spent his childhood and youth playing all sports and spending time with his older siblings and their spouses. He graduated from Winchester High School in 1955 and entered Kentucky Wesleyan College (KWC) in Owensboro, Ky, where he was a member of the Keys fraternity. At KWC, Chuck met the love of his life, the former Jane Ellen Simpson of Union County, Ky. Chuck graduated from KWC with a degree in history (a lifelong love) in 1959 and completed a brief stint in the U.S. Army. In 1960, he taught at Owensboro Senior High School for a semester before beginning a 37 year career with the Social Security Administration (SSA). Chuck and Jane Ellen married on January 31, 1959 and two years later welcomed a baby girl, Laura Jane, with a son, Charles Robert, following in 1962. Chuck's government career took the family to several towns in West Virginia, Tennessee, and Kentucky but in 1973 he became the manager of the SSA branch office located in Henderson, KY, which became the family's permanent home town. Chuck was active in every community he lived in. He loved coaching his children's sports teams; particularly basketball and softball. He was beloved as a coach who put the growth of his young charges ahead of winning; although he loved to win! He was a member of the Lone Oak, KY and Henderson Lions Clubs and served as a youth group leader at Chapel Hill Methodist Church. Later, he served in several leadership positions at his current church, United Methodist of Henderson. As a proud alumnus of Kentucky Wesleyan College, Chuck served on the Alumni Board of Directors from 2001-2004 and was President of the Alumni Association from 2006-2008. His favorite roles in life were as dad to Laura and Rob and "Bop" to his four grandchildren. Chuck loved to plan family trips, surprises and games for the kids. Life was a party when he was around. Chuck was also the keeper of the flame for his brother Harold's legacy. Marine Harold Glenn Epperson was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for his sacrifice on Saipan in 1944 and for whom the destroyer the USS Epperson was later named. Harold covered a live grenade with his body and saved the lives of two other Marines. Chuck enjoyed attending reunions of the ship's crews and often served as a featured speaker to share his brother's story. Although only seven at the time of Harold's death, Chuck considered Harold his personal hero and it was important to him to keep the memory of Harold's sacrifice through the years and down through the family. The next generation will continue that tradition. Chuck was preceded in death by his parents, mother-in-law Jamie Duncan Simpson, father-in-law Sidney I. Simpson, brothers Harold and Bruce and sister Helen Resler. Surviving siblings are sisters Ruth Nickell and Mildred Hodson. He is survived by his wife of 60 years Jane Ellen, daughter Laura McGrail and husband Michael, son Rob and wife Michelle, grandchildren Matthew McGrail, Kyle Epperson, Jamie Epperson, Amanda McGrail Kellen and great-grandbaby-to-be Noah Kellen, nieces and nephews. Visitation will be on Sunday, October 27, 2019 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. with Chuck's Celebration of Life service to follow at 3 p.m. at Whitsell Funeral Home in Morganfield. Burial will follow in Odd Fellows Cemetery in Morganfield. Expressions of sympathy may be sent to the Kentucky United Methodist Children's Homes, 1115 Ashgrove Road, Nicholasville, KY 40356 or the , 225 N. Michigan Avenue, Floor 17, Chicago, IL 60601
Published in The Gleaner from Oct. 25 to Oct. 30, 2019
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