Lemley Chapel
Serving Sedro-Woolley &
All of Skagit County Since 1935
1008 Third Street
Sedro-Woolley, WA
Charlie Fender Memorial
Charlie Fender Memorial

Charlie Fender

Charlie Fender

Friday, November 9th, 2012

Fender, Charlie Folder Photo Fender 4-17-13 croppedCharles D. “Charlie” Fender, 74, a resident of Mount Vernon, Washington, passed away on Friday, November 9, 2012 at Skagit Valley Hospital, surrounded by his loving family.
Charlie was born on April 22, 1938 in Hoxie, Arkansas, the son of Charles & Notra (Long) Fender. The family later moved to Duncanville, Texas where he was raised and attended school, graduating from Duncanville High School with the class of 1956. He then attended college for a while until enlisting into the U.S. Air Force.
After the service Charlie worked for the Firestone Tire Company in Dallas, Texas for several years, transferring to a store in Spokane in the late 1960’s where he worked as a department manager until his retirement in the early 1990’s.
He was united in marriage to Mary Ann Vanderschel in Mount Vernon on December 5, 1992 and after her retirement they traveled the country extensively in their motorhome, spending winters in Arizona and summers in Mount Vernon.
Charlie was very computer savvy, building and maintaining web pages, working on computers and teaching computer classes. He also enjoyed a good old western movie and being around his friends and family. He loved his children and grandchildren and was devoted to all of them. Everyone says he was still a kid at heart.
Charlie is survived by his wife, Mary Ann, at the family home in Mount Vernon; his children, Julie Shepard-Hall (Kevin), David Fender (Susan) and Michael Fender all of Spokane, WA; his step-children, Jowana Hickman (Bill) of Mount Vernon, WA, Doug Scribner (Cheryl) of Spokane, WA and Kathy Gilmore-Klier (John) of Mill Creek, WA; his beloved grandchildren, Erica, Shane, Jacob, Megan, Ashley, Ryan, Cody, Allie & Karli; great-grandchildren, Taija, Chelsea, Tenlee, Wyatt & Chloe; his brother, Daniel Fender (Geneva); a sister-in-law, Nelda Fender, several nieces, nephews and cousins and his loyal companion, Taffy. He was preceded in death by his parents, and a brother, Rodney Fender.
A graveside service will be held on Saturday, April 20, 2013 at 1:00PM at the Mount Vernon Cemetery in Mount Vernon.  The family request that memorials be made to the YMCA 215 Fulton Street, Mount Vernon, Washington 98273  in memory of Charlie.


  • John & Luanne Clark

    We know Charlie and Mary Ann from our years at Sunscape as Snow-Birds.
    Charlie was a real Computer “Guru” — and friend. He helped many people in the Park with Computer problems and we were no exception. He always had a cheery disposition and was ready to help anyone with computer problems or anything else.
    On our trip to Washington several years ago, their place was our first stop. They invited us to stay with them, parking our RV in their yard. What gracious hosts. We had a great time as they showed us all around their part of the countryside!
    Charlie, you will truly be missed! John & Luanne

  • Jackie Stokes

    Charlie my friend you will be missed very much. When we all were together at our 50th class reunion here in Duncanville, Texas, it didn’t seem like we had all been apart that many years. This is so hard for me to write because I know you and Mary Ann will never be back here again, so Mary Ann it was a pleasure meeting you and I am so sorry for your loss. From what all Charlie told me in his emails he is now in Heaven and in no pain. I am thankful for that. Mary Ann just remember all the good times you had with him and it will get a little easier. Tell all his family I said hello and this is from Charlies classmate that almost knew him all our lives and I thought of him as a really good friend even went to the school prom with him. We did have good times. I will think of him and you Mary Ann often with love in my heart. Jackie Banks Stokes

  • Rick and Anita Hayes

    So, so sad to hear that Charlie had pasted away. We had lost touch for the last few years and very sad about that. We were remembering, with Adam the other day about so many times and experiences with Charlie and Mary Ann. We enjoyed their friendship so much and Charlie’s BIG hugs!! He had a very big heart and we will never forget him. We have missed them so much since they moved from Reflection Lake. Would love to keep in touch with Mary Ann!!

  • David and Kathy Vander Meer

    I’m sorry for the family’s loss, and that we won’t see Charlie walking down our driveway again. We met him and Mary Ann when we moved to Reflection Lake, and always enjoyed visiting with him. He was an important part of the community here. It was good to have him drop in when they got back from one of their trips and share some road stories. Best wishes to Mary Ann.

  • Rochelle Trussell

    I speak for myself and others that I’ve already personally heard mourning the loss. We already miss his boisterous, endearing smile and personality that was infectious along with the unreserved greetings that he was well known for. I can hardly comprehend that the last time I saw him and he gave us all our departing hugs was actually our good byes. I’m sorry for the family’s loss. He will be sorely missed.

  • bill and jeanette glass

    we are so sorry i can still see him ziping around in the golf cart he was alway
    s happy we will miss him

  • Heidi R-Jordan

    So very sorry to hear of Charlies passing . These things are never easy. Praying that family and friends will find peace and comfort in memories and the passing of time. God Bless.

  • Marilyn Fritch

    I echo the sentiments of other Sunscape friends who all have missed you and Charlie since you left AZ. A major theme in these tributes is his friendliness…he always had a smile and wave for everyone, even hugs for some. You were both wonderful assets to Sunscape! As a widow myself I can empathize with you and the days ahead you face. He will be with you and Charlie is watching over you. The old saying about time heals may sound trite right now, but if you concentrate on the good memories the pain will ease. Do try to get back to visit us when you can…there are a whole bunch of us who would love to see you.

  • Jerry & Bev Topper

    Jerry & I are very sorry for your loss. Charlie allways had a smile and waved when ever you saw him. He was a good friend and will be missed by many people.

  • Howard Caires

    I was very sad to lose my friend Charlie, I enjoyed hearing from him weekly by emails. I have many good memories with him going to nascar races and dirt racing we both enjoyed. I missed him when Mary Ann and Charlie moved to Washington, Marsha and I got to see their new house while on vacation. You will be missed, always willing to help on the computer ans keeping up on our website here at Sunscape.

  • Eric and Jan Dickie

    MaryAnn Very sorry to hear about Charlies passing. We miss you as neighbors. All our love and prayers are with you and your family.

  • Keith & Marilyn Cornish

    We were so sorry to hear that Charlie passed away and our thoughts and prayers are with you Mary Ann as you deal with life without him. We sure miss you here but know you did the right thing in light of what has happened. We have fond memories of you both and thank you for making our lives brighter.

  • Nancy Reeves

    Dearest Mary Ann,

    Bill, Joey and I were so sorry to hear of Chuck’s passing. We have so many fond memories of the good times we
    shared with you and Chuck at Reflection Lake. We will never forget his expert help with Bill wiring his workshop,
    his computer genius helping me set up the books for The Main Floor and him guiding Joey through the digging
    up all the plants for our garden. In my daughter’s home in Atlanta there is picture Chuck took of our granddaughter, Lucy, eating Cheetos at the Lake!

    The plants Joey transplanted from the lake are still in our garden and next spring when they bloom I will say
    “Thank you, Chuck” not only for the beautiful flowers but for showing us how a life well lived in helping others
    is beautiful in itself. Our love to you and your family

  • Cathy & Bob Egger


    We send our deepest sympathy. We had many good times together playing cards and Chuck will be remembered in our hearts as our friend. Our thoughts prayers are with you and your families

  • Kathy Gilmore & John Klier

    It is hard to think we will not have you in our daily lives in physical form, Chuck, but we have you in our hearts always! Thank you for being a wonderful step-dad and always caring for us like we were your own children. You were the best grandpa too! I am thankful you are not hurting any more, but wish you didn’t have to leave us so soon. Not a day goes by that we do not talk about the great times we all shared as a family …. so glad John and I were able to have time in Arizona with you and Mom and go to the M’s game. You are loved by so many people and we miss you so much already. Always in your minds and hearts!! We love you!!

  • Sue and Larry LaRue

    So many memories , especially many birthday
    dinners at the old Chapter 11….he even stole a menu. So many hours at Firestone, paper drives, drum corp, youth groups, church and ice cream! Rest in peace!

  • Richard Emmel

    Mary Ann,

    The problem with writing this is where to start. As many have already written Lois and I miss the both of you since you left Sunscape. Charlie was one of the great people that we had the privilege to know as a resident of the Sunscape park and more importantly as members, webmasters of/for the Comuter club. He was a “go getter done” kind of guy who, among others, rapidly advanced the computer facilities plus wifi in the park. We hope as you deal with your grief in the follouwing weeks, months, that some degree of comfort comes from the fact that he had a significantly positve impact on Sunscape.

    Dick and Lois Emmel

  • Bob and Jsobel gordon

    We have missed Charlie since he and Maryann moved from Sunscape and his passing is such a loss for our park! Every day at least several times he would come by our place on his way to a meeting or to help someone,but always found a moment to say a few words and then smile and move on to his destination!What a great friend, neighbor all round great guy! Will will miss you very much. Lovingly Bob and Isobel

  • Richard/Karen Devos

    We have missed you charley and all the good times we had at sunscape.

  • Kellie Hill

    It is never easy to hear of someone you knew and loved so dearly that passes. I am proud to say I have known “Daddy Chuck” from my youth at Driscoll Blvd. Baptist Church in Spokane, Washington where also I grew to love and know the rest of his family there. Have many great and loving memories of spending time with them. There will never be a day that goes by now that I won’t think of “Daddy Chuck” RIP until we see each other again in heaven!

  • Michael Fender

    My father was an incredible man…….from a very early age he spent countless hours making sure I could have the things i needed to be happy and well cared for ………i never once remember our lives being tough or in a bad way he was our ROCK ~!!~ And a DAMNN FINE one ………..Although he never made me feel spoiled he made us earn what we needed and wanted and all of the lessons early on he gave us pride in ourselves for what we accomplished with his help and ways of making it happen for us …….. I remember my dad only made it to one of my grade school baseball games and I struck out…..I was sd i didnt do better but after the game he said……..Michael this is just a Game Your talent with come out and shine when its time and the next fall at 9 years old falsified my birth date so I could March my first year in Drum Corps 1979 and never looked back ……He knew what was in me from the start and where my talents lied ………and never once did he not do everything he could to make it all possible for me …….I have so much to learn to even be a fraction of what my father was in my eyes ……… and to all around him………Rest your soul father theres no more suffering for you here……….LOVE YOUR SON MICHAEL

  • Sue (Ballard) Duffey

    I didn’t see CD a lot after you left Texas, but I have fond memories of our childhood and the good times we had as cousins. Uncle Charles and Aunt Notra took us in when we moved to Texas from Arkansas until we got settled. Resst in peace CD. Mary Ann, my thoughts and prayers are with you in this difficult time. I lost my husband of 56 years five years ago. I still miss him every day, but I have a wonerful family and good Christian friends. I don’t know how people cope who don’t have Christ in their hearts. May God bless you and your family and give you peace. I’m glad the family was there to say their goodbys.

  • Doyce Smith

    I”m another DHS class of ’56 member- lots of fond memories of our time together as school mates and friends.
    Please accept my condolences, and we’ll keep you in our thoughts and prayers.

  • Julie Shepard-Hall

    Dad, so many times I wondered about this time and if I would miss the day to say goodbye to you. I’m sorry that we were both so stubborn and didn’t reconnect before it was too late. I’m glad that I got to be with you during your final days. Thank you for sending me a sign that all is well and that the past is in the past. Silent Night will hold a special place in my heart forever. I cherish all of the childhood memories. You made a difference in the lives of so many people. Thank you for being a great dad as we were growing up.

    I love you,

  • Bud and Joyce Bingenheimer

    Mary Ann, as so many others have said, we missed you from the time you left Sunscape. As I told you I have missed Charlie’s hugs. Now no more jokes on e-mail. Of course I have missed you too. I have missed the opportunity to just discuss things with you. I wish you peace and I know your family will be there for you. We hope to see you down here some time. Until the time comes when we are all together again, I wish you the best.

  • Colin and Jean Fender

    We will miss Charlie’s email chatter which we have had these many years and it is so sad that he departed far too soon from all of his loved ones.

    Jean and I remember with great affection our visit to your home at Reflection Lake near Elk back in July 2000 whilst we were on a fly drive holiday in Canada and the USA.

    We have continued to chat until his very recent fall and illness so we too are shocked he is no longer here.

    We feel we have lost a family member as we are sure that there is a connection way back.

    Colin and Jean Fender – Bristol, UK

  • Beverly Smith Hendrickson

    One more star in the heavens.
    Prayers for you, Mary Ann, and all the family

  • Alan and Linda Greager

    Mary Ann, You and Charlie were such wonderful neignbors. Linda and I were always happy to see you both busying about. We were disappointed when you left and the Sunscape Resort has missed you. I am sad about Charlie’s passing but I know that he is fine. You and Taffy need to be best buds from here on out and will depend on one another for support. Thank You for all the good you have done

  • Bill and Pat Gernon

    Dearest MaryAnn, i wish I was ther to give you a hug,you have always been there for me ! You and Charlie have always been ther for everybody for any reason.A smiling face ,and a sit down to talk was waiting for anybody who needed it.We missed you both the day you left Sunscape and going passed your place was ,and still feels empty.Bill and I are so glad you moved near your family.May God comfort you now and his Angels surround you. God has called home One Great Guy= Charlie, I guess even heaven needs to hone up on computer skills.How else do you think those Angel E mails get sent..XOX to all your family…

  • Don and Barbara Nordlund

    We will always remember Charlie’s wonderful smile and positive attitude. He was a loving and caring man
    and we enjoyed our get togethers when you were in Arizona. We know that he is in a happier place and our
    prayers and thoughts are with all the family that he loved so much.

  • Jim

    I had never met Charlie. We did some trading across country. Talked to him a couple of time. He sounded like a great person that would tell you like it is. Sorry to hear of his passing and my condolences to the family.

  • Tonya Doman

    Thinking of you all as you go through this difficult time. I met Chuck a couple of times with Megan–and he always had a smile on his face. Hugs to you all.

  • Stan & Pat Kline

    Charlie’s laugh and smile made all of our days brighter. He was missed as soon as he left. Mary Ann, you and Charlie made your mark here, and in our lives. There are no right words, only great memories. Hold them close. Sympathy to you and the family, including Taffy. I know she will give you comfort in the times ahead.

  • Cecil & Joyce Phipps

    11-13-2012 Charlie this is not goodbye it is so long until we meet again. We are so thankful that we came
    to Washington this summer to see you and Mary Ann. It was a wonderful visit and a memory that will
    always be with us. You were never to busy to dig me out of trouble on the computer. You are and always
    will have a special spot in our hearts. It will be hard to learn a new word, as Charlie & Mary Ann has always
    been one word in our home. We will miss you and will continue to LOVE your Darling wife Mary Ann. Mary Ann and family your have our deepest sympathy. Joyce & Cec Phipps

  • doug and cory meyer

    Don,t know if the first one went thru i will miss your hugs and many memories of meeting yu on the street. All the best mary ann you are in our thoughts. Hugs to you and the family

  • doug and cory meyer

    Mary ann we will miss charlie whole big bunches especially myhugs i got miss yu here i the park our prayers are with you at this time.

  • Michael Harris

    Dearest Mary Ann and Family,

    I so enjoyed meeting you and Charlie here in Central Florida and then again when I stopped by in Elk, WA.
    You both always made me feel like we had known each other for years. Charlie was such an easy person to
    be around. I can see why his children and grandchildren were so close to him. He will be missed by all who knew him and loved him. Godspeed, Charlie. Rest in peace.

    With heartfelt condolences,

  • Ron Stockall

    Mary Ann,
    Sympathys on your loss. Your family will be with you in these times. Charlie was
    a friend who would help you at a minutes notice. Charlie will be sadly missed by all
    who knew him.

  • Sarah & Wilburn Sims

    We have so many memories of you. We had a loving DHS Class of 1956, we were so hoping to have one more reunion, but now will have it in heaven.
    Our love and thoughts with Mary Ann and your family

  • Dick & Ann Reiter

    Charlie and Mary Ann purchased a piece of property next to us on Reflection Lake near Elk, WA. They lived there almost full time, when they weren’t off in their motor home, and we just had a small travel trailer that we used as a dressing room when we visited the lake property. It was always a pleasure to go to the lake and have Charlie come running over to say hi and visit.

    We will miss you, Charlie. You are in a much better place.

  • Len & Norah Sostrom

    Charlie and Mary Ann were such an important part of our Sunscape RV Resort. We will always be grateful for Charlie bringing the park into the computer age and helping to maintain the system once established. It is hard for us to realize he isn’t with us anymore! We are grateful for the many memories and especially of our great visit to your home in Mount Vernon! We will miss his emails too!

  • Susan REDD

    13November 2012
    Dearest Mary Ann,
    Our heartfelt sympathy to your children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren for this sudden loss of your husband Charlie. The Cool Pool People at the YMCA suffer when you suffer, Mary Ann. Please call on us if we can be of any help in the days and months ahead.
    Cordially, Susan Redd

  • Gert & Wayne Scramstad

    Charlie you were taken far to soon, you are missed in the park, we had many discussions about wi fi and good times together, lots of laughs.

  • Glenda Douglas

    Wow what a great class of 56 we had. I did not know that we shared the same birthday until today. Thanks for keeping up with during the last few years. Enjoyed being with you and Mary Ann on or 50th. Glenda

  • Voy & Donna Eschbach

    We will miss you Chuck very much. It is so hard to wrap our minds around your passing away and to say goodbye. You where always a wonderful friend to both of us and we have many wonderful memories. Our trip to Alaska in our motor homes was a high lite for both of us. We know you will be looking down on your family and watching over Maryann. We love you!!

  • Megan King

    Nanpaw – we miss you more than words can say. You are constantly on our minds and we are very thankful for all of the wonderful memories that you gave us. Thank you for being such a great grandpa and Nanpaw…and for loving our grandma. Please watch over us and visit the girls often. Chelsea has already sent a letter up to you and I’m sure many more will follow. We love you so much….RIP.

  • Jowana Hickman

    I sure hated saying goodbye to you this past Friday, Chuck. You were a wonderful stepdad to us kids. We appreciate everything you did for us. I am so glad you and Mom had a great life together, being able to travel like you did and enjoy life. You left us much too soon! The holidays are going to be very hard without you here! I will always love you and already miss you so much! I know you will be watching over us all! Much love!!