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 Charlene Vivian <I>Cheney</I> Lister

Charlene Vivian Cheney Lister

Death 29 Nov 2007 (aged 89–90)
Burial Ottawa, Franklin County, Kansas, USA
Memorial ID 23403020 · View Source
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Charlene Vivian (Cheney) Lister, Ottawa, a remarkably accomplished woman, wonderful mother and grandmother, dear friend and a stellar community leader passed away Thursday, Nov. 29, 2007, at the home of her son and his wife, Ed and Janell Lister, Broomfield, Colo.

She is survived by her daughter Pattie Podmajersky, and her grandson, Patrick Ericsson of Portland, Ore.; her daughter and son-in-law, Judy and Ed Martin of Overland Park; granddaughter Allison Stone and her husband Will Stone of Lawrence; granddaughter Lauren Martin, Los Angeles, Calif., her son James Edmund Lister (Ed) and his wife Janell of Broomfield, Colo., granddaughter Katherine and her husband Graham Rupe and a great grandson George Rupe with another expected in April 2008, Omaha, Neb.; granddaughters Elizabeth Lister of Westminster, Colo.; and Theresa Cheney Lister (Tess) of Fort Collins, Colo.; and two step-grandsons, Ross and Ryan Day of Broomfield, Colo., and a sister-in-law, Eleanor L. Coppoc, Poughkeepsie, N.Y.

Her husband, George Edmund Lister, preceded her in death in 1971.

Born and raised in Selden, Kansas, by her parents James William Cheney and Cecil Buckles Cheney, Charlene attended school and helped with the family farm. She was an only child.

She moved to Ottawa in 1935 to attend Ottawa University. She graduated from OU in 1939 with a degree in music education. It was at Ottawa University where she met and married the love of her life, George. They were married on May 26, 1940.

In 1935 Charlene joined George as an active member of the First Baptist Church of Ottawa. Charlene served on many committees and until her death continued to serve on its governing board and sang in the choir. Her love of the Lord never wavered and her devotion to prayer was boundless.

While George served his country for three years in the U.S. Army during World War II, Charlene taught music, English and biology to high school students in Western Kansas. After George returned from the service he and Charlene returned to Ottawa to take over the family farm loan origination business after the death of George's father. Soon after, George became president and owner of Peoples National Bank.

As a banker's wife, Charlene raised their three children, serving as a Girl Scout Leader, Den Mother of the Boy Scouts, Counselor at Girls State and PTA member.

Charlene was instrumental in creating Franklin County's first day care serving as its president for its first five years. Then Gov. George Docking asked for her to serve as state chairman of what was then called the 4 Cs (Community Coordinated Child Care). In 1966 she assisted in starting the Head Start Program in Ottawa, later known as ECKAN umbrella.

After the untimely death of her husband in 1971, Charlene was asked to join the Missouri Arkansas River Basin Advisory Board and served until her death. In the mid-80's she joined the Marais des Cygnes River Basin Advisory Committee and continued to serve also until her death. Water, its control and supply, has always been an important issue to Charlene.

In 1973, Charlene received her real estate license and became an agent with Hardin-Stockton Realty, Kansas City, and in 1980 joined the J. Lester Brown real estate firm in Ottawa. In 1982 she purchased the firm and renamed it C. Lister and Associates. She continued as an active Realtor until her death. She served three terms as president of the Franklin County Board of Realtors and also served a term of the Kansas State Board of Realtors.

Charlene served three terms (1982-1987) on the City Commission and served as Mayor of Ottawa in 1983-1984. One of her greatest accomplishments while serving on the commission was to get the City of Ottawa committed to funding economic development through the Chamber of Commerce. She was also a strong supporter of the Community Development Block Grant and Fair Housing KMEA Board of Directors. She has been honored with Distinguished Service Award Citation, Russell Crites Award and the 2005 Community Builder Award. She was also honored by the Ottawa Rotary Club with the Service Above Self Award in 2005.

She served on the Ottawa University Board of Trustees for more than 25 years and continued as a Life Trustee until her death. She was a member of the Soroptomist. She was past president of Business and Professional Women and named Woman of the Year; and the American Association of University Women where she was responsible for sending girls to participate in Space Camp. She also served on the Main Street Program Economic Development Committee, the Small Business Development and the Communications and Image Committee of the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce. She was often heard saying, "Nothing can stop development now, it is finally going to happen."

She was an avid reader, loved to take walks, and especially enjoyed time in the mountains of Colorado. As mother, grandmother, aunt, cousin, friend, community leader — she will be missed by all.

Family Members






  • Created by: Jamie
  • Added: 14 Dec 2007
  • Find A Grave Memorial 23403020
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Charlene Vivian Cheney Lister (1917–29 Nov 2007), Find A Grave Memorial no. 23403020, citing Highland Cemetery, Ottawa, Franklin County, Kansas, USA ; Maintained by Jamie (contributor 46884002) .