Former James Island fire chief and former James Island Public Service District commissioner Charles E. Rhodes died Feb. 28. He was 66.
Rhodes, a Marine Corps veteran, was born April 3, 1950, a son of Ann and J.R. Rhodes. He graduated from the Georgia State Fire Academy, where he would later be employed as a staff member.
Rhodes relocated to James Island to assume the role of fire chief in May of 1988, leaving behind his position of fire chief of the North Baldwin County, Ga., Fire Department, a job he took after 16 years of service as a firefighter with the city of Atlanta. Rhodes stepped down as fire chief in 2000, and in 2001 he was elected as commissioner of the James Island Public Service District, a seat he would hold until 2008.
Rhodes dedicated his 20 years of service to the community he adopted. In July 1988, less than two months into his tenure as fire chief, Rhodes told The Post and Courier, “I’m very happy here. It’s been my life-long dream to live somewhere like James Island.”
Rhodes is survived by his wife, Loretta Heath Rhodes, along with his five daughters. A memorial service will be held at Holy City Church of Charleston Saturday March 11 at 2 p.m., with Pastor Mark Timmons officiating. Memorials may be made to the American Cancer Society or the Gold Shield Foundation of Metro Atlanta.