Member of Selma’s banking and financial community dies

Published 12:00 am Sunday, November 26, 2006

Charles R. Cobb succumbs at 79


The Selma Times-Journal

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Charles R. Cobb, longtime member of

Selma’s banking and financial community, died Friday, Nov. 24 after an extended illness. Services will be at 11 a.m. Monday in St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, where he served as a Vestryman and Clerk of the Vestry.

Cobb was born in Meridian, Miss. on June 6, 1927. Adopted at birth by Claude Lawrence and Cecily Brame Cobb, he was reared in Selma, attending Byrd Elementary, Selma Junior High and Albert G. Parrish High Schools.

He took an active role in school and YMCA athletic activities, participating in basketball as a member of the Blue Devils, state champion team, and earning letters in high school football and basketball.

While in high school he was a member of the Boy Scout program, earning all ranks and finishing as an Eagle Scout with two Bronze Palms. After working three years as a councilor at Camp Rotary he was inducted into The Order of the Arrow.

Cobb graduated from Parrish High in June 1945 and worked as Physical Director of the YMCA for three months, In September he entered the U.S. Army and after basic training was stationed overseas at Bamberg, Germany, with the 97th Signal Battalion. On release from the Army he entered the University of Alabama, enrolling in ROTC and receiving a commission as a second lieutenant upon graduation.

He joined the Alabama National Guard in 1951 and began his lengthy military career, which ran concurrently with his banking career. Promoted to Colonel with assignment to the 226th Field Depot in Mobile, he was instrumental in developing wartime Depot support plans and supply procedures for modernization of defense plans.

Colonel Cobb was a permanent member of the National Guard Association Trust Fund that was instrumental in securing benefits for members of the Guard. He was a graduate of the Command and General Staff College of The U.S. Army and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces.

Guard officer Jimmy Ellison, who served under him in several staff positions and with him in various assignments said, upon learning of his death, &8220;Charles R. Cobb was an articulate officer who was above moral reproach in the performance of his duties. He was quick to demand and adhere to high standards that were fair and honest. I hold him in the highest respect as a fellow officer and friend. He will be sorely missed.&8221;

Cobb began his banking career with the City National Bank (now AmSouth), serving 33 years and retiring as Vice President and Trust Officer. John Clark, retired president of the City National Bank, worked with Cobb until his retirement.

&8220;He was a great help to me when I joined City National in 1970. He was a keen, dedicated officer of the bank, working under the tutelage of his father, Claude Cobb, bank president, and combining successfully his career with the National Guard. He will be greatly missed by his wife and a wide circle of friends at the former City National.&8221;

Cobb joined Peoples Bank and Trust Company in 1983 as Senior Vice President and Credit Officer, retiring in 1992. Andy Bearden, bank officer, says &8220;Charlie was instrumental in setting up the Credit Department for us. We looked upon him as &8216;a wise old sage of banking.’&8221;

Cobb’s civic and community involvement included Board memberships with the Selma-Dallas County Chamber of Commerce, Selma Rotary Club, where he was a former president, Selma YMCA, the Salvation Army, Sturdivant Museum and The Old Depot Museum, where he was treasurer for more than a decade. He also served as treasurer of the Chamber of Commerce, the Rotary Club and The Christian Outreach Alliance.

He was a member of the Selma Country Club, the Selma German Club, the Knights of Revelry, University of Alabama Alumni Association and Phi Delta Theta Alumni Association.

Cobb’s survivors are his wife Eleanor Molette Cobb of Selma; his daughter Eleanor Cobb Cheatham and his son-in-law David W. Cheathem, Atlanta; and his granddaughters Eleanor Molette Cheatham and Catherine MacAuley Cheatham, also of Atlanta.

His son Charles R. Cobb III of Birmingham predeceased him.

The Rev. Joseph Knight will officiate at the St. Paul services. Burial will be in New Live Oak Cemetery

with Lawrence Funeral Home directing. Pallbearers will be members of the Vestry of St. Paul’s. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the Montgomery Cancer Wellness Foundation, 4145 Carmichael Road, Montgomery, AL 36106.