Charles M Kellum, Jr was born in Kinston, NC on September 3, 1932. After his father passed away, he and his mother moved to New Bern. While attending school, he joined the National Guard on January 2, 1951. The unit was mobilized on January 23, 1951 and was sent to Fort Campbell, Kentucky in July 1951. Charles was in ground wire communications with the 3rd Division. He returned to the states in September 1952 and was honorably discharged at Fort Jackson, South Carolina.
Upon returning home, he joined the 196th Field Artillery Group, HQ Btry. Charles married his high school sweetheart, Joyce, in December 1952. They have 3 children, 2 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren that all reside in Kinston. He was later discharged when he moved to Virginia for a job move in 1959. When he returned to Kinston, he joined the National Guard again in 1974, in the logistics section. At this time he received his GED from Lenoir Community College. He later became Retention Sergeant for 3 years and was with the motor pool for several years. Charles was employed at Sears with 28 years of service and retired in January 1993.
The HQ 690th Maintenance Bn was mobilized in November 1990 during Operation Desert Storm. Charles was stationed at Fort Bragg, NC but was deferred for medical reasons. He then returned to the 690the Maintenance Company and was discharged in March 1991 with 24 years of service.
Charles continues to live in Kinston and is active in many ways. He is an usher and was a past parish board member of Holy Spirit Catholic Church. Charles is a lifetime member of the Knights of Columbus and is an active member of the Golden Kiwanis. He also has over 11, 000 volunteer hours at Lenoir Memorial Hospital where he is the past president of the Volunteers.