Charles Denzil Tilton II - known as Denny to his family and friends growing up, Charlie in the military and with co-workers, and Charles in later life and at church; came into this world on February 14, 1947 and departed it, surrounded by family and friends, on March 10, 2019 after suffering an aortic dissection.
Born in San Bernardino, CA to Charles Denzil Tilton and Altha Carter, Charles was the oldest of four children. After high school, he joined the military. From 1966 through 1969, he served in the United States Army with the 1st Battalion Mechanized Cavalry 50th Infantry as First Lieutenant, Infantry Branch Officer, Heavy Mortar Platoon Leader, and Captain. Most of his military service was in Columbus, GA and Vietnam. Charles has received many military accolades and medals among which were two purple hearts, the Air Medal, and the Bronze Star for heroic and meritorious achievement in saving the lives of others at great risk to his own life.
God, Patriotism, Country, and The Flag were very dear to his heart and some of the most important things in Charles’s life. He felt honored to serve and defend his country; and he deeply felt his duty to always stand tall - ready and willing to champion freedom and liberty and defend those rights in word and in deed.
Family was another of the most cherished things in Charles’s life and he was the proud father and grandfather of 8 children, 3 step-children, 37 grandchildren, and 5 great grandchildren. Charles and his first wife Ann, who later divorced, were the parents of Chad (Beth), Deann, Wade (Raechel), Aaron (Heather), Sam (Shelly), Rachel, Matthew (Jen), and Kristy (Jake).
On May 31, 1989, Charles and Pamela Morgan were sealed in the Provo Temple for time and all eternity; and Charles added three step-children to his family tree: John (Andrea), Kristyne (Kirk), and Suzanne.
Charles was a life-long seeker of knowledge and skills. He loved learning and sharing what he learned with others, and he loved putting his skills and knowledge to use. Working with his hands to create things was more than just a hobby; it was an important part of how he defined himself. From building model cars and planes as a child, to constructing his own cabin in Indianola, to restoring an antique steam engine to perfect working condition, and even to designing and building a new Pinewood Derby track for the Cub Scouts, (Charles and his friend Bill Hammond probably had more fun building it than all the boys together who will race cars on it!) Charles was an engineering expert. He built one of the nation’s largest oil refineries in Wyoming; and, in Arizona, one of the largest power plants. He also worked on several small power plants along the I-15 corridor in Utah. He was very excited to be instrumental in building the world’s largest flotation cell for refining precious metals.
Charles’s knowledge and skills were not limited to fixing, building, mechanics, and engineering. He loved learning any interesting fact, big or small. All of his interesting trivia knowledge was very useful for the crossword puzzles he enjoyed. He also taught himself to play the banjo and was becoming quite talented. He taught himself everything about restoring and piloting old sailboats; including how to navigate using only the stars or the sun, and he loved the hours spent on Utah Lake and in the Gulf Coast waters of Florida, with his wife Pamela, sailing their boat, Serenity.
The knowledge Charles treasured was most evident in his love for God, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and the scriptures. Charles spent many hours reading the Book of Mormon and the Bible and expanding his knowledge of Jesus Christ and the great Plan of Salvation. Charles held many callings in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints over the years and he used what he learned to teach others and especially loved teaching the scouts he worked with and the children in his primary classes. He combined his boundless love of learning with his great love of children to be an amazing and inspirational teacher.
Charles is preceded in death by his parents and step-father. He is survived by his wife, Pamela; sisters Connie Park, Holly Oswald, and Starla Tilton; and all of his children and grandchildren. He will be missed by all those who knew him and who came to love his infectious optimism, boundless energy, great wisdom, and his humor. But his friends and family are comforted in knowing that Charles has not left them for long. He is in a place where his learning and his love will continue and he is still a part of their lives and it will not be long before he is, once again, embracing his beloved wife Pamela and all of his children and grandchildren. Charles is only a moment away in the eternities.
Friends and family are invited to pay their respects at a viewing and funeral on Thursday, March 14, 2019. Viewing from 9:30 – 10:30 am and funeral at 11:00 am at the East Meadows Ward Chapel, 1552 East 750 South, Spanish Fork, Utah.