Charles J. “Charlie” Bender, 78, of Canton, Pennsylvania, passed away, Thursday, Jan. 30, 2020 at Guthrie’s Towanda Skilled Nursing Unit following a brief illness.

Charles James was born Dec. 11, 1941 in Newark, New Jersey to the late Charles F. and Helen (Kalinowski) Bender. He was raised in the Catholic faith. Charlie graduated from high school and then proudly served in the U.S. Army for two years during the Vietnam era. He later moved to the Canton area to make his home and was employed at Masonite in Towanda for 25 years, retiring in 2010. He was an active member of the Canton American Legion Post 303.

Charlie was one who could fix just about anything. He was a talented mechanic, carpenter, mason and will be remembered for rebuilding his house in Canton Township, along with working on many of his own vehicles. A “gentlemen farmer,” Charlie raised his own beef cattle and throughout the years a few other critters as well. He enjoyed the outdoors and was an avid hunter and fisherman. Charlie was a private individual who was quiet and reserved but always willing to help anyone in need.

Besides his parents, Charlie was predeceased by his siblings, Cathy Cocolotta and Paul Bender.

Surviving Charles are his sons, Chuck (Anna Harper) Bender of Bradenton, Florida, and Eric (Sheri) Bender of Anchorage, Alaska; grandchildren, Jordyn Brophy, Gavin and Logan Bender; siblings, Thomas (Janet) Bender, Margaret (Sandy) Coyman and Fred (Susan) Bender all of Florida; the mother of his children, Ruth Bender of Monroeton; as well as several nieces, nephews and cousins.

In maintaining to Charlie’s wishes there will be no viewing. The family invites friends to attend a celebration of his life from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020 at the Canton American Legion’s Social Hall, 465 Springbrook Dr., Canton, PA 17724.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in Charlie’s name may be directed to the American Lung Association, Marywood University, 2300 Adams Ave., Scranton, PA 18509 or to the Disabled American Veterans, 3725 Alexandria Pike, Cold Spring, KY 41076. The Pepper Funeral Home and Cremation Facility, 578 Springbrook Dr., Canton, is assisting his family with arrangements. Please share memories and condolences at

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