October 6, 2021
Charles Ryan Ham, 98, born March 29, 1923 in Portsmouth, VA, passed away peacefully under hospice care October 6, 2021. After graduating from high school, he entered Virginia Polytechnic Institute (Virginia Tech), completing two years of engineering with advanced ROTC. He later completed Officer Candidate School and was commissioned in March, 1943 (Anti-aircraft Artillery). Increasing combat officer needs led to Charles’ retraining at Fort Benning, GA - Infantry School, and later he joined the 28th Division (112th Infantry) as a Platoon Leader. During the “Battle of the Bulge”, he was awarded the Bronze Star Medal for leading patrols behind enemy lines. Post-World War II, Charles completed his degree in Civil Engineering at the University of Kentucky. After several years with the American Bridge Co., he earned a graduate degree (Industrial Management) at Carnegie Tech (Carnegie Mellon University) in 1952. Subsequent roles with various companies involved market research, analysis, and forecasting. On October 31, 1959, Charles married Ruth Lois Goetz (deceased in 2016). In 1975, Charles joined the Department of the Interior’s Offshore Oil and Gas Leasing Program in NYC as an Industry Economist and then moved with the Department to its new location in VA when the NYC office closed in 1983. Charles retired in 1994, was a Cresskill resident for 55 years, and spent many summers relaxing at the town pool. The library was one of Charles’ favorite places, as he loved to read and do research. He also served several terms as a worship deacon, steward, and auditor at the Presbyterian Church at Tenafly. He is survived by two daughters, Laurie Ham (Norwalk, CT) and Kristen Ndiaye (Hackensack, NJ), and a brother, Whitaker Bernard Ham, Jr. (Norfolk, VA). The family is so grateful to Dr. Lawrence Davis (Englewood, NJ) for his medical expertise and compassionate care of Charles over many years, and to the friendly Sunrise of Cresskill staff who made Charles’ last few months of life as comfortable as possible. The tremendous care and support provided by Charles’ aide, John Graham (Dumont, NJ), since 2017 cannot be measured. He went “above and beyond” and formed a wonderful bond with Charles. The family also extends its heartfelt thanks to Pat Graham for her kindness and for the excellent home-cooked meals she provided. Donations in Charles’ name to the Presbyterian Church at Tenafly, Wounded Warrior Project or the American Red Cross would be appreciated. A memorial service will be planned for the spring.
Charles Ryan Ham, 98, born March 29, 1923 in Portsmouth, VA, passed away peacefully under hospice care October 6, 2021. After graduating from high school, he entered Virginia Polytechnic Institute (Virginia Tech), completing two years of engineering... View Obituary & Service Information
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