Mr. West died on Thursday, July 19, 2012, at Princeton Health and Rehab Center in Princeton.
He was born on Jan. 30, 1926, in Christian County to the late Charles Curtis West II and Minnie Bell Freeman West.
Mr. West was retired from the United States Armed Forces, having served 26 years in the U. S. Navy and the U. S. Army Air/Corp/Air Force during World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam Conflict. He began his military career at the age of 17 at the Great Lakes Naval Station in Illinois. His first assignment was abroad the USS Moore, he escorted convoys to the Mediterranean Sea.
After the USS Moore, he was assigned to Frontier Base Training in Portland, Maine, and subsequently rendezvoused with convoys from the base in Hampton Roads, Va., where he escorted the same across the Atlantic to the Mediterranean Sea. In 1945, he was assigned to the Naval Station in Norfolk, Va., where he began his duty with the Sonar Buoy School.
After WW II, in 1949 Mr. West entered the U. S. Army Air Force at Lackland Air Force Base and was later assigned to electronics school at Biloxi, Miss., Specialty Airborne Radar Systems. In 1951, he was assigned to Hunter Air Force Base in Georgia where he serviced B-50 aircraft during the Korean War.
In early 1954, he reenlisted in the Air Force and was assigned to Barkdale Air Force Base in Louisiana with the Strategic Air Command and subsequently assigned to Keesler Air Force Base in Mississippi for advanced electronic technology training on B-47s. After that he transferred to Ramey Air Force Base in Puerto Rico where he maintained bombing radar navigation equipment on B-36s.
While at Ramey, the 72nd Air Force Base won a bombing competition held at Carswell AFB and Mr. West was promoted to T/SGT due to his technological expertise. In 1958 he was assigned to the 2D Bomb Wing at Fairchild, Air Force Base in Washington and in 1960 he was assigned to the 509th Bomb Wing at Glasgow Air Force Base in Montana where he supported Operation Vietnam Conflict.
Beginning in 1966 he was assigned to the 93rd Bomb Wing at Castle AFB in California and was later transferred in 1967 back to the 509 Bomb Wing at Pease AFB in New Hampshire. While with the 509th Bomb Wing, he received a promotion to Master Sergeant and on Nov. 30, 1969, Master Sergeant West retired after serving his country for 26 years. He also retired from the US Army Corp of Engineers, where he worked at the Lake Barkley Dam for 22 years. He was a member of Westside Baptist Church in Hopkinsville.
He was preceded in death by one sister, Dottie Foster.
He is survived by his wife Mrs. Iva Adams West of Cadiz; two sons, Charles West, Jr. (and wife Rose) of Cadiz and David Wayne West of Hopkinsville; one daughter, Tamera West of Cincinnati, Ohio ; three grandchildren, Chris West, Kaycee West and Whitney Gray; four great-grandchildren, Laura West, Emma West, Landen Gray and Addison Gray.
Serving as pallbearers were Thomas Adams, Josh Gray, Chris West, Scott Adams, Charles West, Jr., David West and Jesse Adams. Music was provided by Joyce Bozarth, pianist, and Mark Harris, vocalist.
Memorial contributions may be made to Kentucky Veteran’s Cemetery West, 5817 Ft. Campbell Blvd., Hopkinsville, KY 42240.