Cover photo for Charles Kerner's Obituary
Charles Kerner Profile Photo

Charles Kerner

December 24, 1929 — April 28, 2024


Charles Kerner

Charles Francis Kerner, 94, of Charlevoix, went home to meet his Lord and Savior on Sunday, April 28, 2024.  He passed away at home surrounded by loved ones.  He was born on December 24, 1929, in Petoskey, MI, the son of Joseph and Winefred (Bannister) Kerner.

Charles was a caring and patient man of God, and a loving husband to his best friend and love of his life, Ethel.  Charles and Ethel met when he was 14 and Ethel was 11. There was never another in their eyes for either of them; they wed on December 27, 1951, at the Church of God in Petoskey.  They never lost the spark of their young love, and Charles taught himself to play the banjo and guitar and often played and sang to Ethel in the evenings.

He was known for his love of gardening, planting both flowers and vegetables every spring, even into his 90’s!  He also enjoyed painting with oil paints, mostly landscapes, but sometimes animals or barns.  He also enjoyed making little clay figurines.  Charles has written many, many poems over the years, and has written several books, finally publishing his first, The Best of Rhymes, in 2002.   He worked at Jim & Charlie's Auto as an auto body and paint specialist until 1980 when he and Ethel opened Pincherry Haven, an adult foster care home which they ran together until 2010.

Charles is survived by his children, Charles Jr. (Diane) Kerner and Lori (David) Buckner; five grandchildren, Jennifer (Syrus) Bingman, Breanne (Justin) Roberts, Tanya (Jim) McKinnie, Tabitha (Daniel) Soullier, and Allen (Julie) Keehn; eight great-grandchildren, Liam, Sebastian, Edmond, Lucy, Autumn, Alexis, Addison, and Braedon; his niece and caregiver these last several years, Melody Sheldon; his much adored companion Miss Molly, a toy poodle gifted to him through Kei Ju Farm & Rescue; and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his beloved wife of 60 years, Ethel Kerner; his granddaughter, Celia Keehn; his parents; his brother, Joseph; his nephew, James; and three sisters, Helen, Darlene, and Lilly.

Graveside services with military honors will take place at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 4, 2024, at Greenwood Cemetery in Petoskey.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to his estate, C/O Lori Buckner, 6685 M66 N., Lot 74, Charlevoix, MI 49720, to be contributed to Charlevoix Humane Society and Kei Ju Farm.

Arrangements are in the care of the Charlevoix Chapel of Mortensen Funeral Homes.  Please sign his online guestbook at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Charles Kerner, please visit our flower store.


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