Charles M. “Charley” Tanata, 87, of Jamestown, ND, peacefully passed away Thursday evening, September 2, 2021 at Ave Maria Village, Jamestown.
Charles M. Tanata was born January 2, 1934, the son of Matthew and Lidwina (Scheler) Tanata. He grew up and attended school and graduated in New Rockford. Charley married Elizabeth Librande in Minot on June 6, 1959; together they lived in Jamestown and raised two children, Carol and James.
Charley began his business career with James River National Bank of Jamestown where he was employed as a proof machine operator. Early in his career, his zest for independence and growth were strong, and in 1962 he opened Charley’s Night Club. It was destroyed by fire in 1966 and then he managed Jamestown Legion Club for several years. During that time he also opened Import Gift Center in 1971.
In 1974, Charley took over management of the Eagles Club and was very active on the boards at the state and local levels. Through his effective tenure with the Eagles, he also successfully established and managed other business in Jamestown, including the 20 Club, the Chuckwagon Restaurant, and the Frontier Fort. Charley took pride in the Jamestown community and was an active board member of the Civic Center, Wagon Days committee, Rodeo Days, Buffalo Days, the Centennial Committee, Jamestown Promotion and Tourism, and the Frontier Village. He was a lifelong member of the Eagles, served as the Dakota State President for the Eagles and was a Fourth Degree Knight of the Knights of Columbus.
Charley enjoyed hunting and fishing, visiting people, and spending time with his family. Charley was a devout Catholic, prayer and worship were a central part of his life. You would find him every morning having breakfast with his friends at the Truck Stop café and spending his lunch hour in Mass at the Basilica. In the evenings, he would often be greeting people at the Fort before heading home for the night. He believed in the motto “work before play”, he was a very hard worker and enjoyed spending time entertaining family and friends at his lake home when he was not at work.
Charley treated everyone as a friend but everyone he worked with became part of his extended family. He had a huge heart and was always willing to help others. He was a beloved husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, brother, uncle and friend.
He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth Tanata; daughter, Carol Wilson; son, James Tanata (Toni); grandchildren, Elsie (Aaron) Motter, Taylor Tanata, and Brock Wilson; great-grandchildren, Logan Motter and Brayden Motter; his aunt, Mary Scheler; sister-in-law, Jeanie Tanata; and nieces.
Charley was preceded in death by his parents and brother, Kenneth Tanata.
Mass of Christian Burial: 10:00 a.m., Wednesday, September 8, 2021 at St. James Basilica, Jamestown, with Father Neil Pfeifer, celebrant.
Rosary: 6:30 p.m., Tuesday, September 7, 2021 at St. James Basilica, Jamestown, with a Prayer Service to follow at 7:00 p.m.
Burial: Sunset Memorial Gardens, Jamestown.
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