Jenkins, Charles David (Dave), 95, of Pitman, New Jersey, died Tuesday, March 2, 2021. Beloved husband of the late Nora Jenkins (née Anderson). Survived by his children, Bill Jenkins (Lisa), Dave Jenkins (Liz) and Andrea MacCorkle (Steve). Also survived by loving granddaughters Elaine (Keith), Kim, Rachel and Karla and beloved great-granddaughters Olivia, Laurel and Eden.
Dave was born and raised in Elmer, New Jersey, and lived most of his life in Pitman, NJ where he built his family home. He graduated from Bridgeton High School in 1943 and immediately enlisted in the Army Air Corps, dreaming of becoming a pilot. Having completed training, Dave received his wings as a navigator and was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant on December 23, 1944, serving as a flight officer with a B-24 bomber crew. Dave's crew was slated for duty over the Pacific in the summer of 1945, just as WWII was coming to a close. Dave often expressed gratitude for the fate which spared him and his crew from combat. His Army service was an edifying and formative experience.
After the war, Dave returned home to Elmer and briefly worked as a lineman for the telephone company and in the DuPont lab at Deepwater, before heading to Rutgers on the GI Bill.
Along the way, Dave met (with a little help from his younger sister, Evelyn) a lovely young woman at the Elmer Methodist Church. He courted her all the way to the Pitman Methodist Church where they were married in 1949. Nora Anderson would be his loving wife for 62 years until her death in 2011. They raised three children together. Dave's care for Nora through her latter years stands as a testament to his love and a hallmark of commitment to doing the Lord's work.
Dave initially made a career as a high school science teacher and was successful and well liked by his students. Later, he shifted to social work, where he was a beloved field supervisor. But his strongest suit was as a father and counselor. He was a wonderful father. Exceedingly kind and generous, wise and patient, always ready to offer his counsel. He was the patriarch of a loved and loving family.
Dave was born into a large family and throughout his life, he enjoyed the social company of his family. He was famous for hosting an annual 4th of July picnic reunion for his extended family in his backyard on Esplanade Avenue for many years. The Jenkinses have many fond memories and albums of photographs of Uncle Dave's picnics.
Dave loved to read the Bible. He sought understanding of God as amateur theologian, discussing the interpretation of the Bible with family. Dave insisted on maintaining family contact and communication, and he was the same with his friends. Dave was a most loyal friend. It seemed that he sought to maintain some contact with every friend he had made along life's way. In later years, he would deftly utilize internet resources to find and contact old friends. He was known to remember birthdays and to recognize the birthdays of his family with a card or phone call to sing Happy Birthday.
Dave lived out his love of God in his love for family and the people in his life. He was a strong advocate of Christ's admonition to "love your neighbor as yourself". And he did.
Due to Covid concerns, there will be a graveside service only on Saturday, March 6 at 1pm at Hillcrest Cemetery in Washington Township, NJ. Covid protocol should be observed for anyone who would like to attend. Memorial donations may be made to The Boys and Girls Club of Central Alabama or Compassus Hospice.