Charles Thomas Norman

Published 5:00 pm Monday, February 17, 2020

Charles Thomas Norman (85) passed away peacefully on February 13, 2020, at St. Elizabeth Hospital in Beaumont, Texas.

Charles entered the Norman family as the youngest child of Lonnie Dee Norman and Mary Glenn Norman when he was born on July 31, 1934.

As a child in Axtell, Texas, Charles was a natural-born charmer; his parents and older siblings doted on him.

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As he grew he became a loyal, devoted brother and a life-long friend to his schoolmates.

After graduating from Axtell High School in 1953, Charles joined the US Air Force, where he worked as a surveyor.

Charles was popular with his peers and his officers in the Air Force, and he would remember that time fondly throughout his life.

His stories about driving his official car, flags waving, through work sites would continue to entertain Charles’ family even until just recently before his passing.

After his discharge from the Air Force, Charles moved back home to be with his mother, whom he adored, and to attend Baylor University.

Charles studied Biology and Business while at Baylor, and he eventually went to work for Kraft Foods.

Charles’ natural charm and excellent interpersonal skills served him well during his years with Kraft.

Working as the Regional Sales Representative for the Dallas territory, Charles earned several awards for sales leadership.

It was during this time that Charles met the love of his life, a baton-twirler fifteen years his junior named Betty Lou Geldmeier.

Betty and Charles were married in 1969, and were together nearly every day until her passing in 2018.

The couple made their first home in Garland, Texas.

There, after three years of marriage, Betty and Charles welcomed their first and only child, a son.

They named him Jason Glenn, an homage to Charles’ beloved mother, Mary Glenn.

From the day he was born, Jason was Charles’ pride and joy.

Soon, the family embarked on a new adventure when Charles decided to leave Kraft foods and North Texas to live nearer to his brothers in Southeast Texas.

The trio eventually settled in Beaumont. In 1972, Charles founded Norman’s, a company that would encompass the businesses of Norman’s Shoes, Norman’s Men’s Fashions, and George Wilson’s Menswear throughout the nearly fifty-year span that Mr. Norman would preside over it.

In business, as with all things, Charles Norman brought his whole-hearted dedication.

He worked tirelessly, until just a few days before his death, to provide for his family.

There was nothing Charles did that he didn’t give one-hundred percent attention to.

Whether the work was a Friday night football concession stand shift for the United Methodist Men or a meeting of the church Finance Committee, Charles could be counted on to be all in.

While his businesses weathered economic downturns, major natural disasters, and the loss of many friends throughout the years, Charles was a force in his own right.

He moved faster and accomplished more in a day than most people around him ever could.

He was a character in the true sense of the word; one never knew what he might say or do next.

He was quick-tempered but also quick to forgive.

His ability to love was unsurpassed. Charles treasured babies, old Gospel songs, the company of his friends, family, and customers, and weekends at the lake.

He enjoyed traveling, taking cruises with Betty and Jason and then road-trips later with the grandchildren in tow.

He was extremely proud of the three kids that called him “PawPaw.”

Recently, he had found solace and pleasure in the congregation of Trinity United
Methodist Church in Beaumont.

Charles is preceded in death by all eight of his siblings and his wife of 49 years.

He is survived by his devoted son and best friend, Jason, and daughter-in-law, Kesha, along with their three children: Anna Norman of Fort Worth, Texas, and Lily Norman and Jay Norman of Beaumont, Texas.

Charles also has two living sisters-in-law: Betty Ruth Norman of Beaumont and Sally Norman of Mansfield, along with numerous nieces and nephews.

A gathering of Charles Norman’s friends and family will be held at Broussard’s Mortuary on Major Drive in Beaumont, Texas.

Charles will be buried beside his wife in Riesel, Texas after a graveside service.

His pall-bearers will be: his nephews, Aaron Norman, Charlie D. Norman, Morris Norman, Junior, Rod Norman, and Tye Norman; and his great-nephews Tye Norman and Chaz Norman.