Charles Edward “Chuck” Robbins August 26, 1937-July 29th, 2022

Charles Edward “Chuck” Robbins August 26, 1937-July 29th, 2022

Charles Edward “Chuck” Robbins August 26, 1937-July 29th, 2022

Charles Edward “Chuck” Robbins was a beloved father, grandfather, brother, uncle, husband and friend during his incredible 84 years of life. He passed away peacefully at home in Eatonville, Washington surrounded by his family on the afternoon of Friday, July 29th, 2022.

He was born at home in a little white house on Salmon Creek in Okanogan, Washington on August 26, 1937 to Bynum E. And Marjorie Mayhew Robbins. Money was scarce and the story told is that a pig and
chickens were given to the doctor as payment for delivering Chuck.

Chuck’s love for the Okanogan was firmly and deeply rooted; even as a child, he loved it there. Chuck and his younger sister Marlene, moved to Tacoma, WA to live with their grandparents, Charles and Marion Powell, on a farm on 80th and Vickery Road. They attended Central Avenue Grade School and Franklin Pierce High School. As a member of the Class of ’55, Chuck excelled in football and played catcher on the baseball team. His baseball coach and History teacher, Mr. Richardson, was his favorite teacher and father figure having the biggest impact on Chuck’s life. They remained close friends throughout his life.

Chuck would travel back to the Okanogan often where he rode horses into the hills, fished, hunted and attended rodeos. After graduation, Chuck attended Pacific Lutheran College (University) in Parkland, Washington. At PLC, Chuck played baseball and was scouted by the Baltimore Orioles and the Cleveland Indians (now the Cleveland Guardians). Drafted by the Cleveland Indians, his dream of playing in Major League Baseball ended abruptly when he broke his wrist in a car accident.

In 1956, Chuck joined the United States Army Reserves and was stationed at the Yakima Firing Center, Fort Ord and Fort Hunter Liggett. He was a Private First Class and served as an Infantry Specialist specializing in automatic weapons; 30 caliber machine guns and Browning Automatic Rifles. Twice, Chuck was selected as the Outstanding Trainee from among the Regimental Guard. This achievement is based upon superior appearance, complete understanding of General Orders and other military knowledge and was a great reflection on his unit.

In 1959, Chuck married Judith Ann Hardtke and they had two sons, David (1959) and John (1962). He supported his family as a truck driver for Pederson’s Poultry Farm.

June 5th, 1962, Chuck was employed by the Pierce County Sheriffs Office as a Deputy. A very dedicated and professional Law Enforcement Officer rising through the ranks of Deputy, Sergeant, Lieutenant, Captain, Chief and then to Sheriff for four years prior to his retirement. He was the first Deputy to rise through the ranks to Sheriff in the history of the department. Early in his career as a Sergeant, he served as the Union President. At the Management level of the department, Chuck graduated from the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia. In addition, he was an active member of the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs. Chuck retired from the Sheriff’s Office in March 1992 and he was recognized as a Lifetime Member of the WASPC.

Asked to return after his first retirement, Chuck accepted a position in 1996 for 4 more years with the Pierce County Executive’s Office under Executive Doug Sutherland, to serve as the Executive Director of Public Safety. In that position he was responsible for the operation of five Pierce County Departments: Sheriff’s Office, County Coroners Office, Administrator of the Courts, Department of the Courts, Department of Assigned Council and the Office of Pierce County Emergency Management. He served in that position until he retired a second time in 2000. Chuck has told many that he had greater success in his life than he ever imagined.
Over the years, Chuck liked to hunt in Eastern Washington with his father, friends and family. He was an avid fisherman well into his senior years and loved to be a “fishing guide” on Mineral Lake. He had a lifelong love for baseball and the Mariners, he loved playing on the Sheriff’s softball team and played first base on a traveling Senior Softball Team. Early in his career as a patrol deputy, if he saw kids and young people playing baseball, Chuck would stop and join in, just to interact and encourage them and have a little fun, this made him the happiest. He carried baseball cards and teddy bears to help calm children at scenes he may have been called to. He went to many games of his grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nephews and nieces and bought many of them their first baseball glove or fishing pole.

Introduced by a mutual friend, Chuck met the love of his life, Norine Ladwig, at the scone booth at the Washington State Fair. They were married in March of 1987 and celebrated 35 wonderful years together. Their love for God and one another was an inspiration to many.

A friendly, strong and outgoing personality, with a great faith in God and a big sense of humor, Chuck always had a good story to tell, ask any of his grandchildren, nephews and nieces about his “pet mouse”! To the Centerpoint Church family in Eatonville where Chuck was a member and one of the first elders of the church, he will be remembered as a man of integrity, sincerity and great influence, he truly had a heart for people.

Charles E. Robbins is preceded in death by his parents and survived by his wife, Norine Rasmussen Ladwig Robbins, sons David (Brenda) Robbins and John Robbins. Stepchildren, Candace (Patrick) Kolbas, Cevin (Kelly) Ladwig, John (TonyAnn) Ladwig and Travis (Connie) Ladwig, loving sister Marlene Robbins Bosler and beloved half-brother Thomas A. Robbins (Leah). 40 grandchildren, great- grandchildren and many nephews and nieces were privileged to spend great amounts of time with Papa/Uncle Chuck and will always treasure their memories and his testimony to love Jesus with all your heart, be honest and work hard.

A Memorial Service honoring Chuck’s life will be held on Saturday, August 27th, 2022 at 2:00pm at Champions Centre, 1819 E. 72nd St, Tacoma WA 98404.
In lieu of flowers, consider a monetary donation to the Family Renewal Shelter at 6832 Pacific Ave., Tacoma, WA, an organization close to Chuck’s heart.


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment