Charles Jeffrey Dalton, 47 Postal Service employee

October 13, 2002

Charles Jeffrey Dalton, a longtime U.S. Postal Service employee died Monday at Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Baltimore after a long battle with adrenal carcinoma. He was 47.

Born and raised in West Baltimore, Mr. Dalton graduated from Cardinal Gibbons High School in 1973. As a young man, he spent a year at Portsmouth Abbey in Rhode Island studying to become a monk, but discovered it was not his calling.

He joined the Marine Corps in 1980 and was honorably discharged two years later after being injured in a car accident while on leave.

Mr. Dalton was known for his playfulness at the downtown Baltimore post office, where he worked in various capacities, including as a clerk, for 17 years. He once convinced co-workers that one of his cats needed prescription eyewear and succeeded in taking up a collection.

Known as "Chuckie," Mr. Dalton was adored by his nieces and nephews. "He was a father to every last one of them," said his sister Paulette O'Neill of Ten Hills. When the children were told they would be visiting their grandmother's house, "the first question out of their mouths was: `Is Chuckie going to be there?'" she said.

Mr. Dalton's hobbies included playing the trombone, singing in church choirs and collecting vinyl records. He also enjoyed sewing, a skill he had learned from his grandmother, and made some of his own clothes.

He was extremely fond of order and neatness from a young age, and as an adult would frequently organize his co-workers' desks and bathe and groom his two cats.

He spent his last summer at Mrs. O'Neill's home, where he was cared for by his teen-age niece Deidre O'Neill. "Day in and day out, she fed him his breakfast and made sure he had his medicine and sat out with him on the porch," said Mrs. O'Neill.

When his niece returned to school in the fall, Mr. Dalton's mother, Genevieve Shepperson of Woodlawn, took over his care.

A Mass of Christian burial was offered Friday at St. Bernardine's Roman Catholic Church.

Mr. Dalton is also survived by four other sisters, Beverly Dalton Jackson of Upper Marlboro, Lori Shepperson Bond of Virginia Beach, Va., and Joan Dalton Kennedy and Phyllis Shepperson Cloud, both of Baltimore; three brothers, Elmer L. Shepperson of Hanover, Pa., Bruce Anthony Shepperson of Hayward, Calif., and Eric P. Shepperson of Baltimore; and 16 nieces and nephews.

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