Col. Charles E. Watkins

Sept. 10, 1929 - March 25, 2006

Col. Charles E. Watkins, 76, of Hendersonville, N.C., passed away unexpectedly Saturday, March 25, 2006, at Hudson Valley Medical Center in Cortlandt, N.Y.

He was born in Bronxville, N.Y., on Sept. 10, 1929, to Charles Edward and Mabel (nee Fischer) Watkins, and later grew up in Larchmont, N.Y.

He attended Mamaroneck High School and served in the Marines before graduating from the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, N.Y., as part of the Class of 1952. Following graduation, Col. Watkins served 26 years as an artillery officer in positions throughout the country as well as overseas in Korea and Vietnam. He ended his military career in 1978 as the assistant dean and registrar of the U.S. Military Academy.

Upon his retirement, he became president of St. Johnís Northwestern Military Academy in Delafield. After retiring from St. Johnís in 1984, he began a two-year motor home odyssey around the United States and Canada before settling in Hendersonville in 1986. In retirement, he also enjoyed extensive traveling throughout North America, Europe and Asia.

Surviving are his beloved wife of 53 years, Constance (nee Campbell) Watkins; his sons, William (Vera) Watkins of Lawrenceville, Ga. and Maj. Steve (Maj. Tammy Gross) Watkins of Sun Prairie; his daughter Col. Gayle (Col. Andy) Chmar of Cold Springs, N.Y.; and his grandchildren, Lena and Mark Watkins.

Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, March 31, at the Old Cadet Chapel, West Point. Interment will follow in Post Cemetery in West Point.

The family suggest donations to the Glaucoma Research Foundation, 251 Post St., Suite 600, San Francisco, CA 94108.

Arrangements are by William F. Hogan Funeral Home of Highland Falls, N.Y. Call (845) 446-2868 for more information.