Charlotte Eleanor Davison Reynolds, 95, of Hockessin, DE, died of cerebral vascular disease at her home on Saturday, January 25, 2020. Her death was peaceful and was accompanied with the consoling benefits of the sacraments of the Roman Catholic Church.
The eldest of four children of Charles Rodney Davison and Eleanor Margaret Toohey Davison, Charlotte was born on November 4, 1924 in St. Louis, MO. She grew up in St. Louis with her childhood severely affected by the Great Depression. She chose Celeste as her confirmation name, and after graduating in 1941 from Rosati-Kain High School with first honors and a Varsity letter in women’s basketball, Charlotte went to work to support her mother and siblings in St. Louis as a telephone interviewer for the American Red Cross Emergency Services and as an intake interviewer at the Firmin-Desloge Hospital. She put herself through college and graduated from St. Louis University in 1946 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Sociology with minors in philosophy and psychology. While in college, Charlotte began a new odyssey in her life when she met George Albert Reynolds who was then in medical school at St. Louis University. After George received his MD degree and completed a stint with the Medical Corps of the U.S. Army in Korea, Charlotte and George were married on October 23, 1948 and moved to El Paso TX where Dr. Reynolds worked as a physician in private practice. When Dr. Reynolds was recalled to active duty in 1951 by the U.S. Army and assigned to the Army of Occupation in Europe, Charlotte returned briefly to St. Louis, MO before joining her husband in Germany. This was at the height of the Cold War, and on one occasion, Charlotte (who was not familiar with German customs) mistook the celebratory fireworks of Oktoberfest for gunfire, possibly signaling the outbreak of open hostilities with Eastern bloc troops. Her husband was away on field maneuvers, and Charlotte was at home with 3 small children. Undaunted by the possibility of Russian troops arriving at any minute, Charlotte barricaded the steps of their home with a baby gate and was prepared to use every ounce of her fighting Irish spirit to defend her children. Fortunately (for the Russians!), the situation resolved itself with the only casualties being some of her neighbors who were hung over the next morning after their Oktoberfest partying. In later life, Charlotte would laugh about how much of a sense of security the baby gate gave her during the incident. In 1954, Charlotte and her growing family returned from Germany to the United States. Over the following years, she and her still growing family used a succession of vehicles that included a blue Ford station wagon and a couple of Volkswagen buses (but, alas, no ’57 T-Bird) as they moved from San Antonio, TX to North Little Rock, AR; Marion, IN; Indianapolis IN; and to the “red” and “grey” houses in Perry Point, MD before settling in Newark, DE in 1969. After the death of her husband in August 2000, Charlotte moved to Hockessin, DE.
Starting with the birth of her first child in 1949, Charlotte was occupied as a full-time mother for many years. When her children were grown, Charlotte returned to school and studied at the University of Delaware where she was admitted to the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society and graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art History in 1980. She then took great joy in spending many hours assisting with the analysis and cataloging of items in the University of Delaware art collection.
Charlotte was active in Good Shepherd Parish in Perryville, MD, where she served on the Education Committee and later in her parish of St John’s-Holy Angels in Newark DE, where she was a Eucharistic minister who brought Holy Communion to many shut-ins. She volunteered at the local food cupboard and was an active member of the Eastern Apicultural Society, the Occidentals International, and the 2x4 Square Dance group. She was also an active member of the Newark Senior Center and the Hockessin Athletic Cub. In more recent years, she was a member of Active Day of Newark.
Whether by land, sea, or air, Charlotte never missed an opportunity to travel. Her destinations included Ghana in West Africa, various sites in Europe, and numerous locations throughout the U.S. She loved reading, gardening, and cooking. Charlotte was a lifelong fan of the St. Louis Cardinals baseball team, and regardless of where she was or what she was doing, she never lost her Irish spirit.
Charlotte is survived by 7 children and 8 grandchildren: Sister Barbara Reynolds SDS of Milwaukee, WI; Paul (Maria Dolores) of Croton, NY; Vincent (Alma) of Greenfield, IN and their 2 daughters Maria Teresa Reynolds Krislock (Abram) of Bryan, TX and Graciela of Greenfield, IN; Philip (Lupe) of Newark, DE and their 3 children Joseph of Baltimore, MD, Regina of Greensboro, NC, and Rose of Newark, DE; Jane of Hockessin, DE; Martin (Patti) of Newark, DE and their 3 children Kaitlin Marinangeli (John) of Bear, DE, Kelly of Seattle, WA, and Nathaniel of Lexington, VA; and Rev. Daniel Reynolds LC of Santiago, Chile. In addition, she is survived by 6 great-grandchildren: Javier, Sebastian, Magdalena, and Damian Krislock of Bryan, TX; Eleanor Reynolds of Greenfield, IN; and Rory Sage Marinangeli of Bear, DE. She is survived also by 2 foster sons and their families: Robert Sutton Jr. (Sheri) of Hazelton, PA and their daughters Katie and Sarah; and William Sutton (Valerie) of Zion Grove, PA and their children Lydia and Wyatt. She is also survived by Victoria Woodward of Mocanaqua, PA, who is the mother of Robert and William Sutton and a dear family friend and by numerous nephews and nieces. Charlotte was predeceased by her husband of nearly 52 years, George Reynolds, their daughter Mary Louise Reynolds, and their granddaughter Angelita Maria. She was also predeceased by her sister, Mary Davison O’Brien of Indianapolis, IN and by her brothers Charles David Davison of St. Louis, MO and Joseph Davison of Kettering, OH.
The family is deeply appreciative of the wonderful people of Active Day of Newark and of the professional staff of Delaware Hospice for helping to make her final days so pleasant and peaceful.
Arrangements are being handled by Doherty Funeral Home, 3200 Limestone Road, Wilmington DE where friends and family may call at 5-7 PM on Friday, January 31, 2020. Friends may also call on Saturday, February 1, 2020 at Holy Angels Church from 9 to 9:45 AM. In the certain and joyful hope of the resurrection, Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at Holy Angels Church, 82 Possum Park Road, Newark DE at 10 AM on Saturday, February 1, 2020. Burial will immediately follow in All Saints Cemetery, 6001 Kirkwood Hwy, Wilmington DE. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions to The Little Sisters of the Poor, 185 Salem Church Road, Newark DE 19713 or to Reynolds Home, a shelter for homeless women and children located at 8023 San Jose Road, El Paso, TX 79915.
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Little Sisters of the Poor (Jeanne Jugan Residence)
185 Salem Church Road, Newark DE 19713
8023 San Jose Road, El Paso TX 79915