Charles L Pace

February 5, 1922 ~ November 6, 2018 (age 96)

Charles Leonard Pace was born in Vernon, Oklahoma on February 5, 1922.  He was the oldest of six children born to Inez Edwards and William Pace.  William was a farmer who moved the family to various communities within Oklahoma in order to provide.  Even though times were hard for farmers, William was innovative in his efforts to sustain his household through tasks such as purchasing a team of mules to help him earn extra money.  William was a quiet man and Charles described him as a good listener who taught him the importance of hard work.  Inez, on the other hand, was what he called, “my leaning post.  She and my brother.”

Charles attended Rosenwald High School and participated in extracurricular activities such as the 4H Club. He wrote a speech entitled, “Don’t be discouraged, encourage others,” that not only earned him 1st place in his school, but 4th place in the state. Upon graduation in 1939, Charles considered joining the army but instead started working with the National Youth Administration.  Shortly thereafter, he left for Tulsa and worked at different places within the city, including cafes and restaurants until he started working on the railroads. This lasted until 1942 when he was drafted in the army and fought in World War II.

Charles served in the military for 3 years before being honorably discharged in 1945.  He worked in Oklahoma City, Kansas City and even Alaska before eventually settling into San Diego in 1952.  He worked at North Island as a Sheet Metalist for over thirty years and retired from this position in 1985. Life in San Diego also led him to join Calvary Baptist Church in which he served as a Deacon as well as a Sunday School teacher. In this role as a Sunday School teacher, he soon met his wife, Jimmie, who was a nurse and mother to her daughter, Michelle. After the two were married in 1971, their family grew and shortly thereafter, Joseph, Jimmy and later, Kelly were born. Of the many children the two fostered over the years, Kimberly Sellers, remained closest to his heart.  Charles and Jimmie were married for 45 years until Jimmie passed in 2016.

Although Charles retired from working at North Island, his passion for construction led him to establish Pace and Sons Construction Company. His contributions to the field of construction not only improved communities in San Diego, he employed and mentored other young men looking for work and opportunity.  His service as a Deacon transferred to United Missionary Baptist Church under the leadership of Pastor Ray Smith. On Tuesday November 6, 2018 Charles transitioned peacefully into the arms of his savior. He leaves behind his daughters Michelle Baker and Kelly Franklin; sons, Joseph and Jimmy Pace; 10 grandchildren, Gerald and Alanna Chairs; Cameron Pace, Lamaiya Carr; Jarius, Nicholas and Chase Pace; Addison, Aiden and Evan Franklin.

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