Charles Leigh Carlson, age 87, was born August 16, 1935 in Chicago, Illinois, the oldest child of Vern and Marion, nee Wilson, Carlson. He passed away in Downers Grove, Illinois on September 13, 2022.
After graduating high school, Leigh joined the US Air Force and was stationed in Blue Knob, Pennsylvania, serving on top of the mountain as a radar operator. One day he and some fellow airmen were hitchhiking from town back to the air base. A car picked them up and drove them to the base. One person in that car was Catherine Shelley. Leigh and Catherine “Kitty” saw each other again not long after and a relationship was begun. The couple married in 1955 at St. Mary Catholic Church in Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania. They moved to the Morgan Park neighborhood of Chicago in 1957, then to Downers Grove in 1960 where they lived to Leigh’s death. Through most of his working years, Leigh worked as a purchasing agent for manufacturing firms.
He was the beloved husband of 67 years of Catherine L. “Kitty”, nee Shelley, Carlson; loving father of Jeffrey Leigh (Robin) Carlson, Ronald David Carlson, and the late Linda Leigh (Richard) Harper and late James Vern Carlson; cherished grandfather of Matthew James and Scott Jeffrey Carlson and Margaret Catherine and Amy Elizabeth Harper; dear brother of the late Vern Robert (Geri) Carlson and late Alfred Ronald (late Margie) Carlson; fond uncle of many nieces and nephews.
Leigh was always enthused by automobiles and he owned several antique cars, including a fully restored Model T and an El Camino. He was a member of a Model T Club, participated in numerous rallies, won over 100 trophies including many Best in Show.
A private Celebration of Life will be held on October 15, 2022.
Leigh’s family invites you to visit the Tribute Wall section of this memorial to leave a message or memory or to upload a photograph.
To send flowers
to the family or plant a tree
in memory of Charles Leigh Carlson, please visit our floral store.