Life Story for
Charles E. Oswald, Sr., 88, formerly of Mahopac, passed away on July 12, 2018, at his home in Blacksburg, Virginia. He was born in the Bronx on March 8, 1930, to Charles A. and Margaret Mary (Mulholland) Oswald. He attended Bronx schools, The American Institute of Banking, and Columbia University. He served in the U.S. Army as a High-Speed Radio Operator during the Korean War from 1951 to 1953. Charlie appeared as a radio operator in the 1953 movie, The Glory Brigade, shot extensively at the U.S. Army Engineer training post at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri, where he was stationed.
He married Anne Douglass Heywang in St. John the Evangelist Roman Catholic Church in White Plains, NY, on February 1, 1958. Together they started their life in White Plains before moving to Mahopac in 1963. They raised three children in their version of paradise on Lake MacGregor in Mahopac. His beloved wife, Anne, died suddenly on September 30, 1991. After 52 years in Mahopac, he moved to Blacksburg, Virginia in 2015 to be closer to his daughter, Suzanne.
Charlie worked in the banking industry for 35 years, retiring as a bank officer from North Side Savings Bank in 1983, and First Federal Saving Bank, now M&T Bank, in 1998. He enjoyed playing tennis, jogging, hiking, biking, and cross-country skiing. Prior to his marriage, the trunk of his car was filled with every piece of sporting equipment imaginable. On weekends, he could usually be found on a ball field, and as a result, his future wife often accused him of being late to Saturday dates. Until his 85th birthday, he took three-mile walks on the bike path nearly every other day and continued to walk on the local trails after his move to Blacksburg. He was an avid sports fan who bled Yankee, Giants, and Rangers blue, a passion he passed along successfully to his children and several of his grandchildren. He enjoyed going up to Saratoga for the day for “Nova Scotia picnics” and the horse races, initially with his wife and children and later with his grandsons. Charlie’s children introduced him to camping, which he took to like a fish to water. Many family trips up and down the eastern coast from Nova Scotia to North Carolina ensued, in tents, pop-ups, and even a houseboat over the next decade.
He took up cooking later in life as a necessity and baking as a labor of love, which he shared with his granddaughters through annual one-on-one Christmas cookie baking events. Large family gatherings were not complete without his baked beans or baked macaroni and cheese, and he often gifted friends, family, and co-workers with Christmas cookies, his famous cheesecake, or banana bread baked in his mother’s coffee cans. Teaching fractions through baking and counting through card games were the devious ways he worked on math skills with his grandchildren.
His motto was “CAN DO”, whether it was taking a bicycling trip through Holland with an old family friend in his sixties, hang-gliding while on a hiking trip in Austria in his seventies, or being helicoptered out of a five-day-hike on the Milford Trek in New Zealand, when extensive fall flooding washed away the only bridge out. Mr. “Can Do” never met an adventure he did not like.
He is survived by his children, Donna Oswald of Oak Park, IL, Chuck (Debbie) Oswald of Brewster, NY, and Suzanne (William) Ducker of Blacksburg, VA, his grandchildren,Caragh, Annie, and Katie Oswald, and Thomas and Matty Ducker, as well as numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Anne, his parents, and his sister and brother-in law (Margaret and Angelo Kacanich).
Visitation is scheduled for Friday July 27 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Beecher Funeral Home in Brewster. Funeral services will be held Saturday, July 28, at 11:30 a.m. at St. John the Evangelist Roman Catholic Church in Mahopac, NY, followed by a gathering to celebrate Charlie’s life. Private interment at Rose Hills Memorial Park. In lieu of flowers, memorials to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital are suggested.