Dr. Charles Harmon (Charlie) Boggs Jr., 94, of Roanoke, Va., passed away Sunday, Oct. 8, 2017, at the Brandon Oaks Nursing Center in Roanoke.
Dr. Boggs was born on July 4, 1923, in Washington, D.C., to Beulah and Charles H. Boggs Sr. He grew up in Franklin, W.Va., but spent his high school years in Morgantown, W.Va.
Dr. Boggs was a graduate of West Virginia University, taking a gap in his education to serve his country during World War II. He served as an officer in the U.S. Navy for 2½ years in the Pacific and was awarded three military ribbons. After the war, he resumed his studies at WVU’s School of Medicine. Dr. Boggs and his two uncles, both dermatologists, represented the oldest family legacy of the medical school, a story that was featured on the school’s website.
Dr. Boggs completed his surgical training at the Northwestern University School of Medicine. In addition to his M.D., Dr. Boggs earned a master’s in surgical research and was awarded the Allan A. Kanavel Fellowship in Surgery from 1954 to 1956.
Dr. Boggs was a general surgeon at the VA Medical Center in Salem, Va., from 1956 until retiring in 1991, and was also director of the Tumor Registry. Additionally, he was an assistant professor of surgery with the University of Virginia School of Medicine for 20 years and enjoyed training numerous surgical residents.
Dr. Boggs’ deep and abiding faith sustained him throughout his life. His vibrant personality, legendary memory and compassionate spirit will be greatly missed. He had a wonderful enthusiasm and extensive knowledge of many topics, including history, geography, family genealogy and sports. An avid golfer and skier, he read voraciously and enjoyed painting watercolors later in life. Most of all, he loved people and treasured spending time with his family and many dear friends.
Dr. Boggs engaged his love of history as a member of the Virginia Society of the Sons of the American Revolution. He served as president and program chairman of the Fairfax Resolves Chapter from 1993-94, state surgeon from 2003-04, and chairman of historic sites and observances for the state of Virginia from 1994-04. He also served on two national committees. In addition, Dr. Boggs was a member of the Pendleton County (W.Va.) Historical Society.
Another passion of his was Alaska. After retirement from the VA Hospital, Dr. Boggs became a VIM (Volunteer in Mission) at Sheldon Jackson College in Sitka, Alaska. He served a total of six months over various summers. Later, he enjoyed sharing trips to The Great Land with his family.
Dr. Boggs is survived by his daughter, Elizabeth (Betsy) Freund and husband, David, of Salem; son, Brian Boggs of Salem; grandson, Harrison Freund of New York City; former wife, Audrey Boggs of Salem; several nephews; a niece; and many cousins. In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by brother, William Boggs; sister, Charlotte Allen; two nephews; and a niece.
A funeral will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 11, 2017, at the Franklin Presbyterian Church in Franklin, W.Va., followed by a graveside service at Cedar Hill Cemetery. Pastors Jerry Smith and Kevin Hand will officiate. The family will receive guests at the church from 10 to 11 a.m.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial gifts to the Rockingham Memorial Hospital Foundation (2010 Health Campus Drive, Harrisonburg, VA 22801) or a charity of your choice. Online condolences may be expressed at www.kimblefuneralhome.com.