St. George – Beloved husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, Charles Leonard Olson, Jr. passed away on December 16, 2020, at the age of 85 years old.
Charles was born June 3, 1935, in San Leandro, California, to Charles Leonard Olson, Sr. and Maurine Miller Olson. He began attending school in the San Francisco Bay Area in the cities of Sunnyvale and Palo Alto. His family then moved to Salt Lake City, Utah, for two years. In 1945, his family settled in San Diego, California. Charles completed the remainder of his education in Pacific Beach and La Jolla, California. He graduated from La Jolla High School in June 1953. He attended Ricks College in Idaho fall quarter of 1953.
Charles joined the United States Army in April 1954 and signed on for three years. After completing Basic Training at Fort Ord, California, he entered the Military Police Training program at Camp Gordon, Augusta, Georgia. Upon graduation from Military Police Training, he was transferred to Tokyo, Japan. He sailed from Seattle to Tokyo by ship. He served at the Quartermaster Depot for one year and the Military Police Battalion in downtown Tokyo for two years. Charles was Honorably Discharged from the United States Army in April 1957.
Charles was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He served as a missionary in the Gulf States Mission which included Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi. He served from 1957 to 1959. After returning home from his mission, Charles married the sweetheart of his dreams, Linda Simms, on April 1, 1960, in the Salt Lake City Latter-day Saint Temple.
Charles graduated from Brigham Young University in 1965. He taught high school for eight years in Nevada and the state of Washington. Charles was a talented and charismatic teacher. With a growing family, Charles had to leave teaching and became the Director of Admissions and Records at the College of Eastern Utah for eight years in Price, Utah. Charles served as the Registrar at Utah State University for 16 years in Logan, Utah. He was responsible for facilitating student registration and maintaining all academic records. Charles retired from Utah State University in 1997.
Charles was an avid reader and loved to learn about history. He loved to read about the lives of major historical figures. He especially enjoyed reading about early leaders in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He had an extensive library. He delighted in reading the scriptures, especially the Doctrine and Covenants. Charles served in a bishopric as well as many other church callings. He was a gifted teacher with an ability to make lessons relevant to every class member. Many people said Charles was their favorite teacher. He taught Gospel Essentials for 25 years. He also served as a High Priests Group Leader for two years and a High Priests teacher for 3 years. His testimony and involvement in the Restored Church of Jesus Christ was a major source of peace and enjoyment in his life.
Charles enjoyed spending time with his family! On weekends, holidays and other special occasions, the Olson family would gather together and enjoy barbequed hamburgers, Mom’s famous clam dip, Swedish crookcrocker, and Dad’s homemade buttered popcorn. The family would also get together on the front lawn of Charles and Linda’s home in Logan on the 4th of July to watch the fireworks display from Utah State University Romney stadium. Charles loved to have his family around him. He was a gifted storyteller and loved to share memories from his life.
Charles was an avid fisherman. He loved to fly fish for rainbow and brown trout in Logan Canyon at Third dam. He once caught a 24 inch brown trout that weighed eight pounds! He said this was the catch of his lifetime! Linda tied the fly, a Royal Coachman, that hooked the big brown trout. Charles fished in Logan Canyon often during the 30 years he and Linda resided in Logan.
In 2012, Charles and Linda decided to move to St. George, Utah as the winters in Logan were too icy, too snowy, and too cold. They felt the move would improve their health and their lives. Moving to St. George was a great blessing! Charles enjoyed attending the St. George Temple on a regular basis, visiting Zion National Park and Snow Canyon State Park often, fishing at Quail Creek, and serving faithfully in his ward callings.
Charles and Linda were blessed with five children; four sons and one daughter. Charles is survived by his loving wife, Linda. Their five children: Robert (Michelle), David (Paige), Reed (Shelby), Paul, and Ann (James); 12 grandchildren, and eight great grandchildren. Charles was preceded in death by his parents, Charles Leonard Olson Sr., Maurine Miller Olson, and his only brother, Robert Richard Olson.
There will be no public viewing or service. A private graveside service for close family will be held. Interment will be in the Washington City Cemetery in Washington City, Utah.
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