Charlotte M. Kanavel of Midland, Mich. died Sunday, Sept. 30 at MidMichigan Stratford Village nursing facility in Midland. She was 89.
Charlotte was born on March 22, 1923 in Trenton, N.J. to Charlotte (Pope) and Edward A. Mueller. She graduated from Trenton State College in 1945 with a bachelor of science in elementary education. In June of 1945 she married Gaylord A. Kanavel; he predeceased her on Feb. 24, 1993. Charlotte and Gaylord resided in Trenton, later moving to Yardley, Pa.
After raising a family, Charlotte returned to teaching, attaining the position of headmistress of Chapin School in Princeton, N.J. in 1975. She particularly enjoyed the inquisitiveness and energy of her middle school students, both at Chapin and at St. John the Evangelist in Morrisville, Pa.
In 1982, Charlotte and Gaylord moved to Oak Bluffs. Life on Martha’s Vineyard suited them both. Charlotte quickly became involved in numerous organizations on the Vineyard, including serving on the board of trustees of Martha’s Vineyard Hospital and of Tele Response and Support Services. She was president of the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital Auxiliary from 1984 through 1988.
Her greatest joy came from her work as an art instructor at the Oak Bluffs senior center, where she was able to share her talent and teaching abilities with many of the Vineyard’s seniors. Charlotte’s watercolors have been exhibited in numerous Island establishments and sold to raise funds for Island charities.
Charlotte is survived by her three children: Susan Charlotte Nash of Martinez, Calif., John Kanavel and friend Janine of Yardley, Pa. and Nancy Grant and husband Charles Grant of Midland, Mich. She is also survived by grandchildren Charlotte Grant and husband John Henry Grant of Mt. Pleasant, Mich. and Melissa Kanavel of Oak Bluffs; two great grandchildren, Hadley and Gwendolyn of Mt. Pleasant, Mich.; nieces Louise Mueller and husband David Lagala of Vermont and Kate Mueller, also of Vermont, and nephews Richard Mueller and wife Aisha Mueller of Vermont, and Carl Mueller and wife Judy Mueller of Vineyard Haven.
Those planning an expression of sympathy are asked to consider the Oak Bluffs senior center and MidMichigan Stratford Village nursing home. The family of Charlotte wish to thank the wonderful staff at Stratford Village for their never-ending kindness and devotion to their residents.
Ware Smith Woolever of Midland, Mich. is handling arrangements. There will be a memorial gathering on the Vineyard sometime in 2013.