Charles R. Cole

ColeCharles Robert Cole, warmly known as Charlie, was born in Canastota, New York on May 16, 1958 to his parents Marshall and Beverly Cole. Growing up in a large family with three brothers and two sisters, Charlie learned at an early age what it meant to be a team player. This continued into his school years where his love of sports began.

During his time at Canastota Central Schools, Charlie lettered in three sports, receiving accolades in football, basketball and track. Accomplishments included the Tri-Valley League All Star Team in both football and in track. He graduated from Canastota High School in the class of ‘77. Charlie’s hard work and determination in high school carried over to his collegiate endeavors.

Charlie attended Thiel College in Greenville, Pennsylvania from 1977 to 1981. During this time, he earned his Bachelors of Arts in Business Administration and continued athletic successes both in football and in baseball. Charlie was the starting quarterback all four years and holds a place in the Thiel College record books in five passing categories. He was selected to be on the PAC All Star Team as a junior and senior. He was also a member of the 1981 PAC Championship baseball team. On March 20, 2011, Charlie was inducted, posthumously, into the Thiel College Athletic Hall of Fame. After graduating from Thiel in 1981, Charlie married his college sweetheart, Lynn, and together they had two children Matthew and Katie. They were married for 27 years during which time they resided in Raleigh, North Carolina, Asheville, North Carolina and Nashville, Tennessee.

Charlie spent the majority of his professional life in the hotel industry. He began his career with Red Roof Inns in 1982. With his leadership and hard work, he rose through the ranks of hotel management to the position of Vice President of Operations. In 1997, Charlie accepted a position of Vice President of Operations-South Region with Homestead Village and was responsible for the daily operations of 42 hotels throughout eight southern states. In 2000, he became the Director of Hotel Operations for Biltmore Farms Hotel Group in Asheville, NC. The hotel portfolio consisted of Doubletree, Hilton, Marriott and Choice International brands. In 2008, Charlie became the Director of Hotel Asset Management of Actus Lend Lease in Nashville, TN. His role was to work with the Department of Defense, IHG and Actus to provide better lodging options for military installations across the country.

Community involvement was very much a part of Charlie’s life and it brought him great joy toCole give back. He coached youth soccer, baseball and basketball. He was active with Big Brothers/Big Sisters and Junior Achievement. Charlie served on the Western Carolina University Hotel Advisory Board and the AB Tech Culinary/Hotel Advisory Board. He was a member of the Asheville Civic Center Committee, Buncombe County Tourism Authority and Manna Food Bank.

With all his accomplishments, Charlie remained humble, never forgot where he came from and recognized how blessed he was. His love for God and his faith in God carried him through a battle with cancer which ultimately took him to his heavenly home on March 31, 2010. He leaves behind many loved ones including wife Lynn, who resides in Nashville, TN, son Matt and wife Rachel of Nashville, TN and daughter Katie who resides in Carbondale, CO.