Our dear Daddo, Charles Ledwith passed away quietly in his loving home in Kenwood on Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2014, only 10 days shy of his 100th birthday, Feb. 14, Valentine’s Day.
He leaves behind his son, Jim Ledwith, and wife, Cathy Gellepis, of Sonoma; his daughter, Barbara Pasquarelli, and husband, Philip, of Scottsdale, Ariz.; grandson, Brian Pasquarelli, wife, Krystalk, and daughter, Charles’ great-granddaughter, Bella, of China; and granddaughter, Sarah Pasquarelli of Northville, Mich. He was preceded in death by his first wife and his children’s mother, Ray, and by his second wife, Pearl. Born in 1914 in New York City, Charles was a true gentleman of this era. He was only 15 when his father died in 1929, and he quit school to help his mother run the family stationary store. He joined the New York National Guard in 1934 as a way to better his life.
Charles went to night school, graduated in 1944 from Polytechnic University, and became an electrical engineer. Concurrently, he worked with the U.S. Navy during World War II, helping to develop dry docks to repair ships in the Pacific. He was also the adjutant to four-star Admiral Husband Kimmel, the Pearl Harbor scapegoat. Afterward, Charles continued to work in Manhattan as an electrical engineer foreman doing electrical work on many major high-rises in Manhattan such as the Chrysler Building, MGM, Bankers Trust and Burlington House buildings.
In 1979, Charles and Ray retired to Burlingame, and he worked with his son, Jim, in real estate. He wore ties whenever he went out, said “thank you” and was kind to all. He loved music especially show tunes and enjoyed playing the piano up until his death, playing daily to his fellow residents at their home in Kenwood. He was a happy man, and was often heard humming music morning, noon, and night.
For his unofficial 100th birthday, he was introduced to his great-granddaughter, Bella, from China and exclaimed “Wow!” Asked how he enjoyed his 100th birthday celebration he responded with “Beep, beep!”
He is truly a hard act to follow. We love you and will forever.