CHARLES LEROY HINKLE
January 26, 1926 November 15, 2018
Depression-era childhood, service in World War II and the Korean War, radio and television management, university professor, business consultant, husband, father, and grandfather - Charles Leroy Hinkle lived a full, productive, and influential life during his nearly 93 years.
Charles was born in Flat River (now part of Park Hills), St. Francois County, Missouri, on January 26, 1926, the eldest of five children born to Grover L. Hinkle and Lola O. Hickman.
After his graduation from high school in 1943, he joined the United States Merchant Marine, sailing the world during the last two years of the Second World War. By virtue of his leadership, his intellect, and the imperatives of war, he became an officer while still a teenager and served as medical officer on board his ship.
After concluding his service in the Merchant Marine, he followed a shipmate to Waco, Texas, where he began a career in broadcasting, working for KWTX Broadcasting Co. His resonant voice was a natural fit for radio, so he spun records, read the news, and provided play-by-play and color commentary for high school and college sports contests.
It was in Waco that he met and married his first wife, Betty Ruth Hunt, to whom he was married for 25 years. To that union were later born two sons.
Before starting their family, though, national service again beckoned, and Charles enlisted in the United States Army in 1952 during the Korean War. Charles and Betty were stationed in Hawaii, where they enjoyed their experiences with Pacific island life.
In November, 1953, around four months following the signing of the Korean Armistice Agreement, Charles was honorably discharged from active service. He and Betty returned to Waco, Texas, where he resumed his career in broadcasting. This time, his talents directed him toward management. As part of his duties, he obtained his private pilot's license and flew a small company airplane around Texas scouting musical talent for the radio. He also began to spearhead the establishment of new broadcast stations as part of a company expansion, during which he and Betty lived over the next several years in Sherman, Texas, and Ardmore, Oklahoma.
Charles completed his undergraduate and master's degrees at Baylor University in furtherance of his business credentials and career prospects. The academic life, however, proved to be a stronger lure to him than continuing in broadcasting. He resolved to become a university professor and was admitted to the Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration as a doctoral candidate. In 1964 he received his Doctor of Business Administration degree.
Charles and Betty set their sights on moving to Colorado, and in 1965 he accepted an offer to teach at and play an integral role in building the business school at the newly established University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. He published numerous textbooks, workbooks, and articles during his tenure. Charles also fulfilled various administrative roles at UCCS in addition to his professorial pursuits. These additional roles included Vice Provost (then the title of the chief administrative officer for the campus) from 1970-1971, and Interim Chancellor from 1977-1978.
Over the years, he lent his expertise and knowledge to numerous organizations in Colorado Springs, serving on the boards of several community, not-for-profit, and corporate organizations.
Following his retirement from UCCS, he served for a time as the executive director of the Southwestern Graduate School of Banking at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. He then applied his unparalleled academic talents and business experience as a faculty member at the Center for Creative Leadership in Colorado Springs.
Charles married a second time, to Esther Franco Lanigan in 1979. They enjoyed many years together until Esther's passing in 2003.
Charles personified the active lifestyle. He was a jogger before it was fashionable, and his family frequently awakened in the early morning hours to the sound of barbells clanking in the basement of the family's home. Outdoor activities such as skiing, hiking, and fishing were regular pursuits. Hiking in particular remained a passion of his until the age of 90.
In his later years, Charles enjoyed the companionship of his close friend, Sue Hinnen. The two of them were frequent hiking companions, sharing a love for the Colorado Mountains.
Surviving family includes: sons, Karl (wife, Gytha) and Eric (wife, Rebecca); grandchildren, Jackie, Austin, Sam, Jenna, and Annika; stepson, Brett Stineman (wife, Linda Larkin and daughter, Audrey).
The family wishes to acknowledge and thank the staff of MacKenzie Place and New Century Hospice. Their kindness, generous spirit, and loving care made the last couple of years of Charles' life as safe, comfortable, and joyful as could be.
A memorial service will be held Saturday, July 13, 2019, at 10:30 a.m. at the Swan-Law Funeral Directors Chapel, 501 N. Cascade Ave., Colorado Springs.