Charles Francis Lennon, Jr.

Born: Fri., Jun. 10, 1938
Died: Sat., May 4, 2019


2:00 PM to 8:00 PM, Mon., May 13, 2019
Location: Visitors Center, Eck Alumni Building

Recitation of the Rosary

7:45 PM Mon., May 13, 2019
Location: - Not available -

Mass of Christian Burial

3:30 PM Tue., May 14, 2019
Location: Basilica of the Sacred Heart

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Music by The Piano Brothers

Charles Francis Lennon, Jr.

June 10, 1938 to May 4, 2019

Our beloved Chuck went to be with his Lord and Savior on Saturday, May 4, 2019, at 9 PM, surrounded by his family. He was preceded in death by his parents, Charles and Margaret Lennon, his sister Gina Piper and her husband Chuck, and their daughter Peggy. He is survived by his sister Ann Grumley of Hales Corner, WI, and the Piper family. The past two years, Chuck bravely fought the effects of advanced congestive heart failure. It was impossible, however, for his heart to fail because it was too full of love for life and others.

He often spoke of how wonderful it was to spend his life working for two great universities dedicated to the Blessed Mother. Living in the shadows of the University of Notre Dame and Ave Maria University gave him great pride and peace.

His life was filled with many accomplishments, honors, and tributes but it was the love for and from other people that gave him the greatest joy. He leaves behind a legacy of joy within his family; his wife Joan, their 5 children and their spouses, and 16 grandchildren. His children and their spouses: Kevin (Teresa) Lennon of Indianapolis, IN; Brian (Susan) Lennon of Grand Rapids, MI; Sean (Milena) Lennon of Floreat, Western Australia; Colleen (Marc) Pana of Bellevue, WA; and Molly (Kevin) Anderson of South Bend, IN are forever thankful for his love and support. His greatly loved grandchildren who called him “Da”: Luke (Brittany), Cal, and Colleen Lennon; Jack, Patrick, Ella Rose, and Kervens Lennon; Harry and Charlie Lennon; Maggie (Ensign, USN), Andrew, Abby, and Matthew Pana; K.J., Shea, and Finnegan Anderson will miss him every day.

One of Chuck’s favorite sayings was, “If you meet someone without a smile, give him yours.” This is the way he lived his life. He loved his country, its flag and military, and the communities where he lived (South Bend, IN and Ave Maria, FL). He touched the lives of countless young people at Shamrock Preschool, Tarkington and Jefferson, John Adams High School, St. Mary’s College, Notre Dame, and Ave Maria University, including his wonderful caregivers. To so many he was “Coach Lennon,” and while he loved coaching and watching all sports, baseball was his favorite and his second love, only behind his wife Joan, their family, and the many dogs in his life. He leaves behind “Irish III.”

A wake is planned for Monday, May 13, from 2 PM to 8 PM at the Visitors Center, Eck Alumni Building on the Notre Dame Campus. The Rosary will begin at 7:45 PM. Mass will be celebrated on Tuesday, May 14, beginning at 3:30 PM at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart.

In honor of Chuck’s spirit and in celebration of his belief in the Resurrection and his love of Easter and Spring, we welcome you to wear your colorful attire to the two-day celebration of his life. For those who cannot attend the celebration, and in his honor, please pass along a smile and helping hand to someone in need.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks you to consider a gift to the Chuck and Joan Lennon Gospel of Life Initiative through the University of Notre Dame. Please direct your gift to the Charles Lennon Memorial Fund. Gifts may be made online at, by phone at (574) 631-5150, or by mail: University of Notre Dame, Department of Development, 1100 Grace Hall, Notre Dame, IN 46556. Alternatively, please consider a gift to River Bend Cancer Services, 3516 E. Jefferson Blvd., South Bend, IN 46615 ( Welsheimer Family Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements. Family and friends may leave email condolences at

Charitable donations may be made in Charles's memory to the following organizations:

Charles Lennon Memorial Fund

University of Notre Dame, Department of Development
1100 Grace Hall, Notre Dame, IN 46556

River Bend Cancer Services
3516 East Jefferson Blvd, South Bend, IN 46615

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