— FORT WORTH – Charles C. Brinkley, a community banker, died Saturday, Dec. 30, 2012, in Fort Worth.
Memorial service is 1 p.m. Friday, Jan. 4, at North Fort Worth Baptist Church, 5801 North Interstate 35 West. Visitation begins at noon at the church and during a reception following the service. Burial will follow at Perrin Memorial Park Cemetery.
Charles was born June 27, 1926, in Weatherford to C.E. and Helen Wilson Brinkley. After graduation from Weatherford High School, he attended Weatherford College, where he was elected student body president; both schools later recognized him as an outstanding alumnus. His student body office led the pre-med student to a job offer from the M&F State Bank, where he began a career in banking Feb. 15, 1945, that lasted through February 2009. His first week at Weatherford College he met Pauline Cranford, whom he married Sept. 12, 1945, and with whom he celebrated 67 years of marriage. If you were ever around him very long, you heard at least once how they met and courted, and how he adored her still.
After Weatherford College, Charles attended TCU and was a proud, enthusiastic Horned Frog the rest of his life. He later taught banking and finance courses at TCU and the Southwestern Graduate School of Banking at SMU. From M&F, Charles moved to the First National Bank of Weatherford in 1952, then to North Richland Hills in November 1961 as the founding president of the Northeast National Bank. Northeast became the flagship of a holding company, Northeast Banchsares – later named Texas United Bancorp – which merged into Allied Bancshares (now Wells Fargo). In 1986, he resigned from the board of directors of Allied Bancshares and on Jan. 1, 1987, began 22 years at Liberty Bank. Over his 64 years of banking, he served in numerous positions with the Texas Bankers Association and American Bankers Association, and lobbied many years for home equity lending to be permitted by the Texas Constitution.
Charles was the chairman of the petition drive and election campaign to create what is now Tarrant County College. He was founding chairman of the Birdville Education Foundation. In recognition of their decades of involvement from inception of the North Richland Hills Public Library to the building of the current facility, the children’s library is named for him and Polly.
In 1952, Charles joined the Weatherford Lions Club and over the ensuing 60 years sponsored over 300 men and women to join him in the Lions’ work of service to their communities. He served his clubs in virtually every office, fundraiser and service activity, and as 2-E2 District Governor. In recent years, he was honored by the Northeast-Richland Lions Club, which he had served as charter president in 1963, with a Melvin Jones Fellowship, a life membership, and a scholarship awarded by the club in his name to college students demonstrating the greatest financial need.
Active in Texas Baptist work even as a young man, he served in the Baptist Brotherhood in the 1940s and 1950s, twice on the executive board of the Baptist General Convention of Texas, and multiple terms on the boards of trustees and development at Hardin-Simmons University. At North Richland Hills Baptist Church, he organized a men’s chorus in 1964, the King’s Men, that grew from eight members to around 65 vocalists and instrumentalists, all laymen, who sang in numerous churches and other venues throughout Texas and beyond until the mid-1980s.
During his years in Weatherford, Charles sang for weddings and funerals over 1,000 times, when he stopped counting. He was the featured soloist for the Parker County centennial pageant in 1956, recording two solos that still circulate today. A composer of country and gospel songs as well as a sacred anthem, he served on various occasions as the interim minister of music for the North Side Baptist Church, where he was a member from 1945-61, and was ordained as a deacon. He later served music minister interims at North Richland Hills Baptist Church, where he was a member and deacon from 1961-85. In later years he served at North Fort Worth Baptist Church as a deacon, choir member, committee member and chaired a committee that helped steer the church harmoniously through the denominational turmoil of the 1990s.
He is survived by his wife, Polly; son, Michael and wife, Jamie Bodiford, Brinkley; sister, Wanda Baker and husband Paul; and numerous nephews, nieces and cousins, before all of whom he sought to live his life clearly centered on his Lord, with whom we know he now lives. His family and many friends are grateful to God for Charles’ example, encouragement and friendship.
Charles was preceded in death by his parents; and a sister, Dorothy Reeder.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers, memorial contributions be made to the following: Brinkley Scholarship Fund at Hardin-Simmons University, 2200 Hickory, Abilene, TX 79698; the Weatherford College Foundation for the Charles Brinkley and Pauline Cranford Brinkley Scholarship Fund, 225 College Park Drive, Weatherford, TX 76086; or the Northeast Lions Foundation Inc., P.O. Box 820215, North Richland Hills, TX 76182.
Lucas Funeral Home