Jean Hanes Charlton, 87, of Lynchburg, Va., formerly of Carteret County, died Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2019, at Lynchburg General Hospital in Lynchburg.
The family will receive guests who wish to offer condolences at Jean’s home from 2 to 5 p.m. Monday and will hold a private memorial service at a later date.
She was the devoted wife of Robert D. Charlton for 55 years until his passing in 2011.
Jean was born June 2, 1931, in Winston-Salem, the eldest daughter of the late G.C. Hanes and Martha Gaynelle Hanes.
She was a member of the National Honor Society and the president of the Quill and Scroll while at Gray High School. After graduating in 1949, she worked at Harris, Upham & Company until she married in 1955, and the young couple moved to Chapel Hill. In the late 1950s and the 1960s, Jean was devoted to raising her young family. In the 1970s, however, she re-dedicated herself to her education by attaining first, an associate degree in horticulture, then a bachelor’s degree in plant science and finally a master’s in agricultural education from North Carolina A&T University. She completed all of these programs with highest honors, and she did so while raising four young boys.
During these years, Jean applied what she was learning at home. With Bob and the boys providing extra hands, she designed and landscaped their yard with such skill and artistry that passersby would literally stop and comment on its beauty. It was also at this time that she found her true vocational calling – teaching. Though she worked in several positions in towns across North Carolina over the years, she was most fond of her last position at Carteret Correctional Center in Carteret County, where, as “Miss Jean,” she taught horticulture to prisoners pursuing vocational training. As a teacher, Jean always went the extra mile. She knew all of her students’ birthdays and would bake a cake or pie depending on the prisoner’s preference. Thanks to this and other heartfelt gestures, Miss Jean’s class was a perennial favorite among the prisoners.
Besides her dedication to, and successes in, her career, Jean’s proudest achievement was being “Mom” to her four sons and “Grandma” to her grandchildren. Over the past several decades she has attended innumerable sporting events and band concerts, tirelessly patched up scrapes and sibling squabbles alike and nourished her family with both biscuits and love. Her family meant the world to her.
Jean is survived by four sons, Clark Charlton of Lynchburg, Va., and wife Jennifer, Don Charlton of New York City, N.Y., and wife, Janet, Bobby Charlton of Durham and wife Linda and Russ Charlton of New York City, N.Y., and wife, Julie. She also leaves a sister, Martha Bailey of Hope Mills; a brother, Mike Hanes of Lakewood Ranch, Fla.; and seven grandchildren, Ben, Patrick, Michael, Lydia, Molly, Ivy and Leif.
In lieu of flowers, please consider making a memorial donation to UNC-TV, P.O. Box 600067, Raleigh, NC 27675 or online at unctv.org.
Tharp Funeral Home & Crematory of Lynchburg, Va., is assisting the family. To send condolences, please visit tharpfuneralhome.com.