Digest>Archives> May/Jun 2020

Remembering Charles E. Feltner 1936 - 2020


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Charles E. Feltner by Michigan’s DeTour Reef ...
Photo by: Dave Bardsley

We are saddened to announce the passing of Dr. Charles (Chuck) Edward Feltner, Jr, 83, who was instrumental in the restoration of Michigan’s DeTour Reef Lighthouse. During 1998 to 2020, he had served as the DeTour Reef Light Preservation Society’s Chief Historian and Restoration Chairman. On September 17, 2019, he was designated Director Emeritus of the DeTour Reef Light Preservation Society.

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The restored 1931 DeTour Reef Lighthouse is ...

Chuck was an assiduous researcher of shipwreck and lighthouse history and published many manuscripts related to Great Lakes maritime history. His landmark books “Great Lakes Maritime History: Bibliography and Sources of Information” (1982), and “Shipwrecks of the Straits of Mackinac” (1991), coauthored with his wife Jeri, are still used today. Chuck was very proud of helping to establish the “Straits of Mackinac Shipwreck Museum” in Mackinaw City, Michigan in 2014.

Chuck won many awards for his contributions to engineering and his Great Lakes maritime history volunteer efforts, which included the prestigious Award for Historic Preservation from the Association of Great Lakes Maritime History in 2006 for his dedicated efforts in preserving Great Lakes maritime history since 1977.

Charles Feltner is survived by his wife Geraldine (Jeri) Kay Baron Feltner and his children. In 1998, his wife Jeri was a founding member of the Board of Directors of the DeTour Reef Light Preservation Society and was also actively involved in the rescuing of the DeTour Reef Lighthouse.

A celebration of Charles Feltner’s life is tentatively scheduled for 11:00am on Sunday, May 31, 2020, at The Inn at St. John’s, 44045 Five Mile Road, Plymouth, MI 48170.

Donations in Charles Feltner’s memory can be made to the DeTour Reef Light Preservation Society, P.O. Box 307, Drummond Island, MI 49726.

Our condolences go out to Charles Feltner’s family and wide circle of friends. He left a legacy that will be carried forward for many generations to follow.

This story appeared in the May/Jun 2020 edition of Lighthouse Digest Magazine. The print edition contains more stories than our internet edition, and each story generally contains more photographs - often many more - in the print edition. For subscription information about the print edition, click here.

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