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Charles attended Culver Summer Naval School and graduated from Greensburg High School in 1960. Throughout high school, Charles was busy playing golf and tennis, running track and cross country, as well as playing the trombone in the school band and with the "Jive Bombers." He completed his Eagle Scout ranking in Boy Scouts through the First Presbyterian Church Troop No. 71.
Charles attended Indiana University and graduated from the Indiana School of Mortuary Science in 1962.
He joined his father's business, Gilliland-Howe Funeral Home, when he was 20 and led the business starting at the young age of 32 until his retirement. He cared for his hometown through his dedicated career as a funeral director. He loved being on the funeral home drive every Fourth of July where the parade ended with an apple for everyone.
Charles was a member of the First Presbyterian Church, along with memberships in the Greensburg Masonic Lodge No. 36, Indianapolis Scottish Rite, Indianapolis Murat Shrine, American Legion Post 129, Knights of Pythians and Eagles. He served as the co-chair of the United Fund, president of the Rotary Club as well as on the boards of the Greensburg Savings and Loan and First Federal Bank where he recently retired after 40 years of service.
An avid golfer, Charles played great courses, including St. Andrews in Scotland and Pebble Beach. Preferring Titleist Pro V golf balls, he aced hole 13 at the Greensburg course with his 6-iron. His Thursday nights were spent playing golf with lifelong friends at the Greensburg Country Club where he was a member along with his membership at Hillcrest Country Club in Batesville.
Charles was preceded in death by his son, Charles E. Gilliland II, and nephew, John S. Goddard.
He is survived by partner, Debby Slone; daughters, Elizabeth (Scott) Place and Emily (Brenden Butler) Gilliland; aunt, Carol (Howe) Clifton; sister, Ellen (Greg) Wadsworth; grandsons, Ian and Alexander Place; and cousins, nieces and nephews.
A visitation will be held at Gilliland-Howe Funeral Home from 1-5 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 29. A funeral will be held at 10 a.m. Monday, Jan. 30, at the Greensburg Methodist Church. The Rev. Margaret Ann Lowe will be officiating. Burial will follow at South Park Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to the following nonprofits: ALS Association of Indiana, John S. Goddard Scholarship - Cathedral High School or Main Street Greensburg. Online condolences may be made to the family at www.gilliland-howe.com.
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