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1933 John "Charles" 2023

John "Charles" Walden

December 16, 1933 — November 12, 2023

Avera, GA

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John "Charles" Walden, 89, beloved husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend, passed away peacefully on November 12, 2023, at Piedmont Hospital in Augusta.  To celebrate his life, graveside services with military honors will be held in the Pleasant Grove Baptist Church Cemetery at 3:00PM Wednesday, November 15, 2023, with Pastor Taten Wagner officiating. The family will receive friends at James Funeral Home from 1:00-2:30PM prior to the services on the 15th

Born on December 16, 1933, Charles led a remarkable life filled with love, hard work, and a deep connection to his community.  His journey began in Avera, where he was a lifelong resident. He attended school there until the 11th grade when he decided to pursue his passion for farming on the family farm. His dedication and work ethic were evident from a young age and would become defining qualities throughout his life.

On a beautiful February day in 1953, Charles married his childhood sweetheart, Ida "Jenene" Irby. Their love story would span an incredible 66 years until Ida's passing in 2019. Together they created a loving home and raised their children with love and devotion.

In February 1955, at the age of 19, Charles joined the Army to serve his country as a patriot. He selflessly devoted himself to the Army until February 1957. His military service was an important chapter in his life that shaped his values of honor and duty.

After completing his service in the Army, Charles started working at Kingsley Mill in Thomson before finding his calling as a machinist at Lily Tulip. Over time, the company underwent transformations and became Fort Howard Paper and later Sweetheart Cup. Charles dedicated over three decades of service to this company, retiring as their Maintenance Supervisor.

Outside of work, Charles was known for being a great conversationalist — always willing to strike up a conversation and get to know people. It was said that “the older he got, the more he talked”.  He had a gift for storytelling and loved reminiscing about the "old times." His warm smile and genuine interest in others made him beloved by all who had the pleasure of knowing him.

Charles was a fun-loving individual who knew how to enjoy life's simple pleasures. He would spend hours tending to his vegetable garden, meticulously growing a variety of crops like okra, corn, peas, peppers, tomatoes, and turnips. His green thumb brought forth bountiful harvests year after year.

In addition to gardening, Charles had a passion for music. He particularly enjoyed singing along to the tunes of Elvis Presley and Jerry Lee Lewis, bringing joy and laughter to those around him. In his younger years, he never missed an opportunity to dance and found immense delight in attending the Avera street dances.

Fishing held a special place in Charles's heart as it allowed him to find solace and tranquility amidst nature's beauty. Whether he was casting a line into a serene river or fishing with loved ones by his side, those fishing excursions were moments of pure bliss for John.

Above all else, Charles cherished his family with an unwavering love that knew no bounds. He was a dedicated husband, father, grandfather, brother, and friend. His nurturing spirit and steadfast support created an unbreakable bond between him and his loved ones.

Charles was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Jenene Irby Walden; sons, Richard Walden and Wayne Walden; granddaughter, April Walden; parents, Pauline Byrd Walden and Talmadge Walden; and brother, Bowdre Walden. John leaves behind a legacy of love and fond memories for his surviving family—sons, Keith Walden (Ellen) and Greg Walden (Teresa); brother, Ray Walden (Elaine); eight grandchildren, Angel English (Brent), Chase English (Sarah Ann), John Walden, Brandon Walden, Tasha Walden, Danielle Walden, Stanley Walden (Megan), and Krystle Nelen; twelve great grandchildren; a special friend, Kitty O’Tyson; nieces, nephews, other extended family and many friends.  Serving as pallbearers will be Brandon Walden, Chase Walden, John Walden, Stanley Walden, Dylan English and Mason Padgett.

Charles's kind heart, infectious laughter, and wise guidance will forever be a source of inspiration to all who were fortunate enough to know him. He taught us the value of hard work, the beauty of simple pleasures, and the importance of cherishing those we hold dear. As we bid farewell to a remarkable individual, let us remember Charles as a loving soul whose legacy will live on within our hearts.


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Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

1:00 - 2:30 pm (Eastern time)

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Graveside Service

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

3:00 - 3:45 pm (Eastern time)

Pleasant Grove Baptist Church

1350 Church St, Avera, GA 30803

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