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Charles V. Woerner, 87, of Virginia Beach, died on June 10, 2024. Although born in Denton, Md., to Charles F. Woerner and Lillian Towers Woerner, he lived nearly all his lifetime in Virginia. He was a graduate of Northampton High School on Virginia’s Eastern Shore in 1954, and graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Virginia Tech in 1960. He was elected to three engineering honor societies, including the Tau Beta Pi, and obtained a Master’s Degree from George Washington University in Engineering Management in 1970. He worked for NACA, which was the forerunner of NASA, retiring with over 38 years of service. He participated in or led the launch of 14 U.S. satellites/instruments.

He was on the management team for the launch of three satellites by the renowned Dr. James A. Van Allen of the University of Iowa. He was selected as NASA’s sole representative to an international workshop in Alpbach, Austria, in 1978 to write the scientific and engineering requirements for the United States’ first Global Climate Program Instruments in space. The following week he presented a paper on the topic at a symposium in Innsbruck, Austria. Upon returning to the United States, he gave a presentation on the Global Climate Measurements to the National Academy of Science in Washington, D.C., to solicit the Academy’s Scientific and Program support. The instruments began flying in 1984 on the Space Shuttle Challenger with Jon McBride as Commander and Kathy Sullivan and Sally Ride as the payload handlers to deploy the satellite into orbit.

Subsequent instruments were flown on the Nation’s weather satellites and continue flying in orbit to this day. In 1985, he was awarded NASA’s Outstanding Leadership Medal. During his career, he has been awarded many outstanding leadership citations. He had the unique ability to serve not only as the Project Manager but also as the Lead Technical Engineer. He was known for his outstanding support for all his personnel. He retired while Assistant Division Chief of the Projects Division.

He had a strong commitment to community service making the community a better place. In his younger years he was a member of the Hampton Roads Jaycees which was probably one of the two most outstanding chapters in the Nation. For instance, one year in which he was Recognition and Rewards Chairman, the Jaycees received awards for most outstanding chapter and president. He served as President of the First Colony Civic Association in Williamsburg. Subsequently, he was treasurer for three years of the Gloucester American Red Cross prior to serving for three years as Chapter Chairman. He was very active in St. Therese Roman Catholic Church serving on as many as nine committees at one time, including chairman of the building committee for the new worship center, offices, and classrooms, as well as Parish Council President for two years.

He and his wife, Mary Alice, did barbecues for the Relay for Life, raising over $40,000 for the American Cancer Society. They transitioned to the Bread for Life Food Pantry in Gloucester, raising over $60,000 for that charity. He served for one year as vice-president and two years as president for the Ware River Circle of The King’s Daughters and Sons. Recently, he served for four years as State Vice-President for the Virginia Branch of The King’s Daughters and Sons.
He served as Commodore for two years for the Ware River Yacht Club and was instrumental in doubling the size of the seating for the club. He and his wife, Mary Alice, shared the social committee for many years and were rewarded the Booster of the Year twice, as well as food chairs for 22 years for the Virginia Governor’s Cup Yacht Races. His friends in the Ware River Yacht Club, The King’s Daughters and Sons, and neighbors were well aware of his corned beef and cabbage, New Orleans Cajun blackened salmon, original Beef Stroganoff, Crème Brûlée french toast, and tiramisu. Many said he was the best chef in Gloucester County.

He and Mary Alice loved to travel and visited every country in Europe a number of times: Australia, New Zealand, China, Canada, Central America, and two countries in Africa. They also took many cruises around the world, earning Status III on Holland America Line. They also enjoyed playing competitive bridge.

He and his loving companion, Levonne, had a short year together. They took a trip he had always wanted to do and went to Graceland and on a Mississippi cruise. They also had a love for sharing with others and hosted many “meet and greets” and they loved to play cards.

He is survived by three children: daughter, Pamila Ashworth and her husband Curtis of Virginia Beach and grandson, J.C. Ashworth; son, David Woerner and his wife Bobbie of Grifton, N.C., and granddaughters, Danielle and Marissa Woerner; son, Glenn Woerner of Newport News, Va.; sister, Joan Riggin of Exmore, Va., and many more nieces and nephews and their children.

Family and friends are invited to a funeral mass and celebration of life at the Church of St. Therese, 6262 Main Street, Gloucester, Va., on Wednesday, June 19, 2024. The mass will begin at 11 a.m. and be preceded by a family greeting at 10:30 a.m. A reception will follow the mass. Inurnment will be private in Virginia Beach.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Ware River Circle of The King’s Daughters and Sons or the Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters (CHKD) located at 601 Children’s Lane in Norfolk, Va.

Services under the direction of Hogg Funeral Home & Crematory.