Charlene Phillips Hughes of Fayetteville, NY passed away on November 2, 2018 at the age of 73. She succumbed peacefully to a long-standing illness, in the presence of family, while in the loving care of the staff at Crouse Hospital in Syracuse.
Charlene was born on December 10, 1944 in Bluffton, Ohio, the third child of Genevieve F. and Arthur L. Phillips (both deceased). Charlene was raised in Bowling Green, Ohio and was graduated from Bowling Green High School as class valedictorian. She attended Bowling Green State University where she was a member of the Alpha Xi Delta sorority (also serving as president). Charlene was awarded the distinction of being the most outstanding senior woman. She earned her bachelor's degree in Education and went on to become a High School English teacher.
Charlene married James A. Hughes II on February 12, 1972 and moved to Syracuse, NY to start her family. Following the birth of their first daughter, Charlene became a stay at home mother, dedicated to the care and well-being of her immediate and extended family. She many times opened her family home and hearts to others. Charlene was also a natural leader and stayed actively involved in the Syracuse community through numerous charities and affiliations. Her good works included the Junior League of Syracuse (past president), the Dewitt Community Church (20-year choir member), and former board affiliations with the American Red Cross, Contact of Syracuse, the United Way, and the Consortium for Children's Services.
At the age of 40, Charlene decided to return to the work force. She earned two graduate degrees in Education from Syracuse University and worked for 20 years as an Elementary School Counselor in the Fayetteville-Manlius School District. She retired in 2008 and soon after was diagnosed with Multiple System Atrophy. Charlene handled her deteriorating physical condition in the very same way she lived her life up to that point; with grace, dignity, humor and perseverance. She is remembered by family and friends for her generous heart, keen intelligence and hard-charging, yet caring spirit.
Charlene is preceded in death by her brother, Roger Phillips (Bowling Green, OH). She is survived by her husband, James Hughes (Fayetteville, NY), sister Sandra Korn (Westfield Center, OH), daughters Jennifer Hughes (Fayetteville, NY) and Barbara Napoli (Darien, CT), and grandchildren Anya Napoli, Keira Napoli, James Napoli and Alexander Hughes. The family wishes to particularly thank the staff of the Nottingham for the excellent care they provided to Charlene while she was in residence for the last 5 years of her life.
Calling hours are scheduled for Tuesday, November 6th from 4 to 7 pm at Burns Garfield Funeral Home, 3175 East Genesee St. Syracuse, NY. Funeral services will be held on Wednesday, November 7th at 10 am at the Dewitt Community Church in Dewitt, NY. Condolence contributions may be made to the National Ataxia Foundation at 2600 Fernbrook Lane, Suite 119, Minneapolis, MN 55447-4752 or to the Dewitt Community Church Choir Fund at 3600 Erie Boulevard East, Dewitt, NY 13214.