Dave, KR4OW went looking for Charlie the other day because he had gone 'off radar' so to speak and it was discovered that Charlie, AF4QT became a Silent Key back in February 3rd of 2011.
Charlie was one of the founders of the Cypress Chapter and was also our first Chapter Head until stepping down due to his health issues which were many. The most recent was a bout with throat cancer which we assume, but cannot confirm, was the cause of his death.
Charlie was the one who located the venue used for the 2009 10-10 Convention and it was he and Ken who met with the hotel sales team to secure the facility for the Convention. Charlie was an avid CW operator and like his father, W4AT, a tinkerer when it came to radios and antennas building home brew radios and working QRP using portable antennas.
I met Charlie through a company that we both worked for back in the 70's because we actually worked in the same room but different departments. Soon after I was transferred to Orlando from Fort Lauderdale I got to know Charlie as 'one of the guys from work'. One day he was back among the parts shelves for the trucking company we worked for humming away in Morse code as he took inventory. During lunch I asked him where he learned Morse code so well and he told me his dad was a ham radio operator who had taught it to him. I told Charlie I too was a ham and wondered why he didn't have his ticket as the code was one of the biggest hurdles to overcome in those days. He told me I sounded like his dad.
So one day I invite him to my house to gawk at the towers, the antennas and the gear in the shack and then we had a chance to sit down with him and just talk. After about 10 minutes I pushed a paper across the table to him him and told him it was time for his novice exam. Imagine his surprise! The novice exam was, with the exception of the code test, fairly easy to pass back then. But he had enough electronics background from his dad, an AMSAT pioneer to my understanding, that he passed the test and became KA4VGS.
Charlie was a patriot having served our country in the Navy during the Viet Nam era. I have put a link to his obit here: http://tinyurl.com/Charlie-AF4QT