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  • Judy Slater

Charles Jeffries: A Memory

In mid-year 2019 of our newly-launched

SAS-C Writers Group meetings, Charles joined us and became a regular bi-monthly meeting participant. He preferred to listen to others' writings. We enjoyed his quiet presence that ameliorated some boisterous moments during our meetings.

We convinced him to share his Mt. Fuji story, written long ago, and encouraged him to submit it for our 2019-2020 Lit Mag, which he did. It is a delightful account of his fearless feat in climbing the mountain, and in nearly getting lost on his descent.

Charles' life included 38 years as a Microbiology professor at Wayne State University. He was a "regular" at the Senior Center, enjoying Woodcarvers, Strength and Conditioning, the Conversation Club, and anything that interested him. Charles was also an avid volunteer at SASC, serving on the Board and giving back to the Senior Center through programs like Panera Bread distribution.

At home in his workshop, his woodcarving hobby was enhanced by strains of Beethoven and Bach as background. When you come to SASC, you will see Charles' wood handiwork in the handrails and the information boards. He was always more than happy to help others.

An excerpt from Charles’ 2020 Lit Mag writing

“Mt. Fuji's Ascent and Descent”

“I started my descent…it became obvious if I continued on the trail, I would not reach the railroad station in time to join my friend…he held my tickets…I set off straight down the side of the mountain, off the worn trail… rapidly down through the soft ash-covered sides, slipping and sliding… finally… to reach the train station before our train arrived…

Looking back on the choice to leave the safety of the trail was reckless. Had I suffered an injury, I don’t know when my location would have been discovered.”

July 1953

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