Charles Keith Stanfield 1945-2023
Charles (Chuck) Keith Stanfield, 77, of Crete, Illinois, died unexpectedly at home on October 20, 2023. He was born in Harvey, Illinois on December 14, 1945 to Wayne and Mary (Lynn) Stanfield, who were devoted parents that fostered Chuck’s lifelong love of learning and creativity. “Charlie” (as he was known growing up) graduated from Thornton Township High School and achieved many accomplishments. During his high school years, Chuck was an all-state pitcher and he also was a master scuba diver who was on the City of Chicago’s Underwater Search and Rescue Team. Chuck had many interests in his younger years and was always making something – anything from moonshine to underwater camera housings, which he sold to Florida fishermen (including one to Jacques Cousteau’s son).
Following high school, Chuck went on to play minor league baseball for a Chicago Cubs minor league ball team in Kentucky. During the Vietnam War he was drafted to the Army, where he served in the Signal Corps in Germany. Chuck was the Director of Engineering for B&J Manufacturing, Co. for 37 years. He worked as a private consultant and independent manufacturer in the tire retread business until the time of his death. Chuck held over a dozen patents to his name; he was known worldwide as a leader and innovator in his field. Some of his hobbies included trap shooting, firearm repair, and knife making. There was not anything that Chuck could not fix.
Chuck married the love of his life, Mary Kathleen Hlefer (Mary-Kay) on July 1, 1978. They made their home and raised their children in Crete, Illinois. Chuck coached baseball and softball for his children for many years and was known as “Coach” on the ballfield. However, “Dad” and “Poppy” were his favorite titles – his family was his life. He was an avid reader, a junk food connoisseur, and had a knack for storytelling. Chuck will be remembered as a very giving and generous person.
Chuck was preceded in death by his parents, Wayne and Mary Stanfield; a sister, Mary-Lou Stanfield; infant son, Christopher Keith; son, Mark Morgan; and nephew, David Stanfield, Jr. He is survived by his loving wife, Mary-Kay; son Scott (Barbara) Stanfield of Phoenix, AZ; daughter Pamela (Gabe) Stanfield-Tompkins of LaPorte, IN; brother David (Susan) Stanfield of Chicago Heights, IL; grandchildren Brandon and Austin Stanfield, Gabriella and Liliana Tompkins, and Morgan Stanfield; nephew Michael Stanfield; nieces Melissa Stanfield and Sunshine (Tony) Chavez; and special friends: the Desmond family and Sas (Sindhu) Kumar.