Charles Bradshaw, lifelong Trojan, passes away

Published 11:00 pm Monday, January 6, 2014

Charles Bradshaw, 49, a former resident of Troy, passed away Saturday in Montgomery following a battle with cancer.

A memorial service will be held Tuesday at 2 p.m. at First United Methodist Church in Montgomery with visitation at 1 p.m. at the church.

Bradshaw moved to Troy with his family in 1976 when his late father, Coach Charlie Bradshaw, was named head football coach at Troy State University. Charles was in sixth grade at the time.

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He was a 1983 graduate of Charles Henderson High School and later the University of Alabama.

After graduating from Alabama, he went to work for Colonial Mortgage Company in Montgomery and briefly lived in Atlanta before moving back to Montgomery where he went to work for a commercial insurance firm.

He soon became a partner of Harmon, Dennis Bradshaw.

According to his close friend, Bill Rice, Jr., Charles Bradshaw was one of the great leaders and most popular students CHHS has ever produced and loved his years in Troy.

“I don’t know if you could identify a better all-around person than Charles,” said Rice.

In addition to being a top student, Bradshaw was captain of the football team his senior year, president of the Key Club and was named “Mr. CHHS” his senior year.

He was one of just two sophomore players to start on the 1980 CHHS state championship football team (where he played outside linebacker and rotated with Emory Ellis).

He signed a college football scholarship with the University of Florida following high school and was a redshirt freshman in the 1983 season.

“Charles went up against the likes of Wilbur Marshall (a college Hall of Famer) every day in practice. When he got to Florida, he had worked hard to get above 200 pounds. After two-a-day practices, however, he had dropped down to 180. I can’t imagine taking on 300-pound pulling guards as a linebacker at that size!” said Rice.

Bradshaw transferred to Alabama. He also had earned an Army ROTC scholarship and later served his country as a National Guard officer.

In Montgomery, he was a business and civic leader. He was the founding chairperson for the central Alabama board of Magic Moments, an organization that grants wishes to children with life-altering medical conditions.

He is survived by his wife Katie (Broach) Bradshaw and a son, Charles Austin Bradshaw, Jr. (who goes by Austin), 13, and Beverly Bradshaw, 9, both students at The Montgomery Academy.

He is also survived by his sister Leigh Denson and his mother, Martha Gibbs (formerly Martha Bradshaw).

“Montgomery became home for Charles but Troy is also home,” said Rice, adding that Charles’s mother, Martha, probably also qualifies as one of Troy’s “all-time great citizens.”

“I know everyone in Troy of a certain age will remember Charles as a great friend, a giving person and a natural leader and role model. He will be deeply missed, but he will always live on in our memories and hearts.”

For memorial and service information, please see the obituary in today’s paper.