Obituaries detail

Charles Garland Saunders

Charles Garland Saunders, Jr. passed away November 20, 2019 at his home at Tallgrass Creek, Overland Park, KS, following an extended illness. He was 93. Charles was born to Charles Garland and Lila Jordan Saunders on September 1, 1926 in Winston-Salem, NC and was raised in Newport News, VA. He ran track, played basketball, and played drums in the band at Newport News High School. Upon graduation in 1943, he was inducted into the US Army. The Army recognized his engineering ability and sent him to school at Gettysburg College. WW II ended, and Charles was encouraged to enroll in the School of Engineering at the University of Virginia by his sister and her husband who taught Economics there. In his fourth year, he met and married his wife, Page Long Saunders, and they subsequently lived in Charlottesville, Newport News, Roanoke, and Williamsburg, VA, until moving to the retirement community of Tallgrass Creek in 2008. Charles was a NASA aerospace research engineer who developed notable equipment for the Life Support program in the Apollo, Viking, and Skylab missions. His lunar module water metering gun has a home in the Smithsonian. In his early years, Charles crewed in sailing races on the Chesapeake Bay and later was an avid bridge player, golfer, and member of both Williamsburg Country Club and the St. Andrew’s Society. He was an excellent dancer and enjoyed music and the symphony. A longtime member of Williamsburg Presbyterian Church, he served as Elder. In Overland Park, he was a patron of the Nelson-Atkins Museum. Charles and his wife of 63 years enjoyed traveling the world and appreciated different cultures. He was preceded in death by his wife, his parents, and sisters Effie Kowalski and Margaret Powers and one nephew, John Downs Eddy. Survivors include his daughters Martha Saunders Nowak (Kent) of Olathe, KS, and Lelia Saunders Barks of Tampa, FL, four grandchildren John Nowak (Jami), Kyle Nowak (Lauren), Campbell Barks Vogel (Dan), Stuart Barks (Lory), nine great-grandchildren, five loving nieces and nephews, and his very dear friend Dorothy Tucker of Tallgrass Creek. Cremation will be followed by burial in Cedar Grove Cemetery, Williamsburg, VA, in the spring. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions to the American Cancer Society. 


Sheri Porter Nov 24 ,2019

Outlaw ,Lenexa ,Kansas

Martha and Kent, I loved learning more about this amazing man. His legacy will live on in his talented children, grands and great grands. Blessings and prayers to you as you enter this Christmas season knowing your Dad is enjoying a special celebration in Heaven.

Jim Barks Nov 25 ,2019

Our thoughts and our prayers are with the family on Charlie's passing.

Carol Nowak Congdon Nov 28 ,2019

Sister- in-law to Martha Saunders Nowak ,Colorado Springs ,Colorado

Richard & I send our deepest condolences to Martha Lynn & LeeLee. May the memories carry you through this difficult time. Charlie had a good life & will be remembered by all of us. Love & Hugs, Carol & Richard