On Tuesday, December 1, 2020, Charles Matthew Morris Jr., loving husband and father of two, passed away.
He is survived by his adoring wife of 52 years, Marja, his two daughters, Beth Morris Veigl (Edgar W. Veigl) of Cullman, AL and Kathy Morris-Jones (Steven E. Jones III) of Brooklyn, NY, and three grandchildren, Lily Beth Veigl, Chloe Annabelle Jones and Hudson Mitchell Jones; sister, Barbara Morris Evans; brother, Joe Morris; Sister-in-law, Dr. Sally K Mitchell (Dr. Crispin Spencer) and a host of nieces, nephews, and other family members and friends.
Charlie is now reunited with his family and friends that preceded him in death: his parents, Charles Matthew Morris Sr. and Mary Louise Coffee Morris; his sister and her husband, Mary Louise Morris Petrossian (Leon Petrossian); his father and mother-in-law, Col. John W. (Jack) Mitchell and Mary O’Connor Mitchell; his sister-in-law, Delores “Tudie” Tudor Morris; his brother-in-laws, Jesse “Shep” Evans Jr. and John Wilmot Mitchell Jr., who was like a brother to Charlie.
Charlie was born on May 2, 1940, in Decatur, Alabama; he was an alumnus of Florence State College, now known as the University of North Alabama. Following college, he served in the U.S. Army on active duty for over 4 years and remained in the reserves for an additional 5 years. Charlie’s non-military career began during a visit to his older sister in Washington, DC, to see President Kennedy’s Inauguration. He decided to stay for the following semester and visited the local unemployment office to find a job. He was placed in a temporary position at The White House on a small team of men responding to 4 million pieces of mail sent to President-elect Kennedy before the Inauguration. This position led to a 31-year career serving under seven U.S. Presidents as a non-political staffer in The Executive Office of the President. After the White House, Charlie spent 9 years at the Department of Energy as the Director of Printing and Publishing. He was an adept storyteller and was an entertaining “off the record” biographer of each of the Presidents he had the privilege of serving. Charlie met his wife Marja when they worked together during the Johnson administration; they were married on June 8, 1968 at Bolling Air Force Base Chapel.
Our family called him Dai, Charlie, Charles, Popsie, Grampy Charlie & Uncle Charlie. He had a sweet and kind soul, a smile on his face and will always be remembered for his big heart. He gave his best in everything he set out to do, especially with his family. His patience was evident, considering Marja’s packing habits for road trips. He even had to buy larger cars to accommodate the second wardrobe that came along for the ride. He loved cars and loved to drive. He would often take long road trips with his family to visit his in-laws in Vero Beach, Florida and siblings in Alabama.
Beyond his family, Charlie’s passion was golf. The game was etched in him from a young age. He was introduced to the game he grew to love and master at the Decatur Country Club, under his mentor, Golf Pro, Bill Curtis. He would walk daily to the club where he began caddying, working his way up to attending the bag room and eventually into the golf shop. He started learning how to play on Mondays when the club was closed and could practice the game.
Charlie was a scratch golfer throughout most of his life and captain of his collegiate golf team.
Upon his retirement, Charlie returned to his hometown of Decatur from Northern Virginia, which allowed him to play in all of the Alabama Invitational Golf Tournaments. He had a love of sports, watched every golf tournament that aired, was a member of the White House Bowling league, and enjoyed watching football and baseball. He liked Auburn football but had a soft spot for his daughters’ alma maters, the Tennessee Vols and the Virginia Tech Hokies. He enjoyed playing golf with friends at Hidden Creek CC (Reston, VA) as well as Decatur CC and Burningtree CC (Decatur, AL).
To know Charlie Morris was to love him. You knew you were in for a fun surprise when he winked just before a joke. He was one-of-a-kind and we are so blessed that he was ours. We will miss him dearly.
The family would like to thank everyone for their heartfelt prayers and best wishes. We would like to especially thank his good friend, Kent Murphy, for his many visits and support over the years.
Due to the risk of COVID-19 the family is regretfully not having any services at this time. When times are safer, the family will announce a memorial celebration of Charlie’s life.
In Lieu of Flowers, donations can be made in Charlie’s memory to the following organizations:
The Alabama Golf Association Foundation/Youth on Course Alabama
Kids R First — an all-volunteer 501©(3) organization dedicated to the education and helping kids (grades K-12) from families of limited financial means with school supplies to receive the same opportunities as their peers in Northern Virginia.
Please visit mossservicefh.com to leave condolences for the family. Moss Service Funeral Home; Cullman, AL. directing. Charles Matthew Morris, Jr.