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Charles Willis Crooks

June 2, 1924 ~ February 16, 2018 (age 93)

Charles Willis Crooks, 93, of N. Canal Street, Carlsbad, New Mexico, passed away Friday, February 16, 2018 at Carlsbad Medical Center.

Cremation will take place and there will be no public services.

Charles Willis Crooks was born in Cisne, Illinois on June 2, 1924 to Ernest and Ruth Crooks, the only boy and the youngest of four children.  He attended school in Cisne until his junior year when he moved to Fairfield to play football.  Upon graduation he married his high school sweetheart Dorothy Ann Brown in the summer of 1942.  He served in World War II in the army Air Corps as a ball turret gunner on a B 24 in the Pacific theatre. After the war he attended University of Illinois in Chicago Illinois on the GI bill where he attained his Doctor of Dental Surgery.  He and Dorothy then moved to Carlsbad New Mexico in 1951 where he started practice first with Dr. Pearson, then with Dr. Rauch.  He entered into solo practice and practiced dentistry until he was in his late 80s, practicing dentistry for over 50 years.
Charlie, as many knew him, had many passions and interests.  First was hunting and fishing which he did with great enthusiasm, catching tarpon in the Gulf of Mexico and hunting grouse and dove and quail and duck all over New Mexico and west Texas.  Then he and Dorothy became avid arrowhead hunters and had hundreds of beautiful points he would display in arrangements on his walls.  Then his interest turned to golf which he took up with a fervor --he maintained this passion until he was 90. He was an avid reader and became quite the expert on the Kennedy assassination and would discuss these findings with his many acquaintances and close friends
He was preceded in death by his wife, Dorothy; siblings: Marguerite, Ernestine and Jean and his parents.
Charlie is survived by his two children: Dr. Lida Crooks and husband, Dr. Michael Hartshorne of Albuquerque, NM and Mary Studt and her husband, Dr. James Studt of San Angelo, TX and their three children; Anna, and special friend Vinay Krishnan; Andrew and special friend Stefanie Steiner; and Camille Studt and fiancée Cody Carpenter.
Charlie was always ready for a new adventure and a new acquaintance.  His friends through the changes in his life held a great importance and comfort for him. Charlie and friends and would hold board meetings at a local eatery where they would solve the world's problems on a daily basis. He had a true lust for life that led him beyond the borders and traveled to Mexico to visit friends up until a few months before his death. Charlie loved his friends as much as he loved living life and wanted to live it his own way.  He loved thinking out of the box and he forbade a traditional service, instead wishing his friends would go do something they really enjoyed in his remembrance. We may have the last laugh as we may again celebrate him in a nontraditional way.
We wish to thank St. Johns rehab and all who participated in his care for bringing him back from the brink once more, and special thanks to Dr. Hughston for saving his life at least twice and Dr. Vanderzant for guiding his rehab through rough waters.  Special thanks to Dr. Honeycutt for the final compassionate care when it counted. God Bless.

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