|Birth: ||Sep. 25, 1923|
|Death: ||Aug. 16, 2011|
Charles H. WATKINS Jr.
WATKINS, JR., Charles H. Founder of "O'Charley's Inc.", died peacefully in his sleep on August 16, 2011 at the age of 87. Preceded in death by his wife, Johnnie Watkins, he leaves a twin sister, Charlotte Canon of Florence, AL; a son, Charles H. (Chuck) Watkins III (Celia) of Nashville, and their three children, Greer, Charlie IV and Caroline; a daughter, Marcie Gemmill (Steve) of Nashville, and their two children, Andrew and Elizabeth; a daughter, Carole Dahlinger of Nashville, and her two children, Bill and Karin. Charlie, a native of Paris, TN, served twenty years in the United States Marine Corps as a pilot and retired as a Major, USMC in 1963, after which he became the Assistant to the Chairman of the Board, Kemmons Wilson, the founder of "Holiday Inns of America". He moved his family to Nashville in 1966 to open a "Shakey's Pizza" franchise in the Green Hills area, which launched a long & colorful entrepreneur career. Later, he founded a publicly held restaurant company "Al Hirt's Sandwich Saloon". He formed "O'Charley's, Inc." in 1971, and opened the first restaurant on 21st Ave. South in Nashville. He sold the company eleven years later and then developed and/or co-developed several other concepts, including co-founding "Cheeseburger Charley's" with his son in 1988. Charlie will always be remembered for his engaging spirit, and his thoughtful and enthusiastic personality, both in business and in his personal relationships. He touched the lives of many individuals, both past employees and young upstarts in business. He was a dear friend to all that knew him. Dr. Robert Crumby and the Rev. Amelia Cannon will officiate. Pallbearers will be Dick Ferrando, John Jay Hooker, Nick Spiva, Nick Hill, Pat Gilmore and Mike Straisinger. Funeral service will be at 1 p.m. on Monday, August 22nd at the Middle Tennessee State Veterans Cemetery, 7931 McCrory Lane, Nashville, TN. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Alive Hospice. Visitation will be on Sunday, August 21, 2011 from 4-7 p.m., at MARSHALL DONNELLY COMBS, (615) 327-1111.
The Tennessean from August 19 to August 21, 2011.
Middle Tennessee State Veterans Cemetery
Created by: Susan McDonald Roberson
Record added: Aug 17, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 75054315