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Charles Nathan Cheatwood

April 15, 1935 — December 8, 2023

Charles Nathan Cheatwood

Charles Nathan Cheatwood, 88, passed away peacefully on December 8, 2023 at Sagecrest Alzheimer's Care Center in San Angelo, surrounded by family and caregivers.

The family will receive friends from 1:00 PM -3:00 PM on Sunday, December 17, 2023 at Robert Massie Funeral Home. Interment of ashes will be performed at a later date in Lexington, North Carolina. Arrangements are under the direction of Robert Massie Funeral Home.

He was born April 15, 1935 in Ozark Arkansas, the youngest child of Nathan Charles Cheatwood and Willie Azora Clayton Cheatwood. In 1940, the family moved to Seminole, OK, before later moving to Oklahoma City where Charles attended Northeast High School. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1952, and after his basic training in Ft. Riley, KS, received airborne training in Benning, GA. He was later assigned to the 307th Airborne Medical Battalion (MASH) in Ft. Bragg, NC.

While stationed at Fort Bragg, Charles met Carolyn Leonard, and they were married on November 6, 1954 in York, SC. Carolyn passed away in June of 2023, shortly before the couple's 69th anniversary. They had two children, Charles, Jr. ("Chuck"), and Connie.

Charles had a gift for languages, and his long and distinguished military career included attending Army Language School in 1956 for training in Chinese Mandarin. In 1957, he was awarded the National Defense Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster after serving as an interpreter for the Armistice meeting of the Neutral Nations Supervisory Committee in Panmunjom, South Korea. His next assignment began in November of 1958 in Fort Hood, where he served as a military intelligence translator (linguistic), before being sent to Fort Holabird, MD for training as a prisoner of war interrogator. From 1962 to 1966, Charles and family were sent to Okinawa, where he served as a translator, interpreter, traffic analyst, and expert linguist, along with additional classified duties. While stationed on Okinawa, the Army sent Charles to Thailand and Vietnam, and awarded him the Joint Services Commendation Medal.

In 1966, Charles was assigned to Goodfellow Air Force Base in San Angelo, where he worked as senior instructor. In June of 1968, Charles received training in Vietnamese at Ft. Bliss, before being stationed at 8th Radio Research Field Station in Phu Bai, Vietnam. While in country, he performed voice intercept and other classified duties. He was awarded the Bronze Star, the Vietnam Service Medal 4 Battle Stars, and the Vietnam Campaign Medal. In July, 1969, Charles returned to Goodfellow AFB. After 20 years of service, he was honorably discharged in June of 1972 with the rank of Master Sargent. Toward the end of his military career, Charles began charting a new career in radio and television repair by taking a correspondence course. He worked jobs in TV repair and aircraft cable design before opening his own electronics repair business in San Angelo, Triangle Electronics, from which he eventually retired.

Charles kept active during his younger years by playing tennis and racquetball. Charles enjoyed fishing and camping, traveling, and spending time at the beach. He was an avid reader throughout his life, and during his declining years spent most of his time reading books.

In addition to his beloved wife, Charles was preceded in death by his parents Nathan and Willie Cheatwood, his sisters Lorine Reynolds, Birdie Marie Stapleton, Grace Blott, and June Cook, and his brother, Ralph Cheatwood.

He is survived by his son, Charles Cheatwood, Jr. and wife Margaret; his daughter Connie Dressler and husband Lee; three grandchildren, David Cheatwood and significant other Kata, John Dressler and wife Caitlin, Bryan Dressler and significant other Veronica; great-grandson, Mathis Dressler; his brother, Floyd Cheatwood; and many nieces and nephews.

The Cheatwood/Dressler family extends their heartfelt gratitude to the staff at The Crest, Sagecrest Alzheimer's Care Unit, and Concho Hearts Hospice, all of whom took such good care of Charles during his illness.

Charles was a wonderful husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, uncle, and brother. He will be greatly missed by all his family.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Charles Nathan Cheatwood, please visit our flower store.

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