Charlie Crume excelled at work and play

Sandra ClarkAnderson, Obits

Charlie Crume Jr. had a fine career in physics and an even finer time at the Oak Ridge Playhouse. And when Dr. Crume died on Oct. 18, 2021, his obituary included a bit of both. Charlie’s funeral service will be held at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Oak Ridge at 4 p.m. on Saturday, November 6, followed by interment of ashes in the church’s memorial garden.


A native of Ohio, he attended Dayton public schools, earned his bachelor’s in physics from Wabash College and a master’s, also in physics, from Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut. He moved to Oak Ridge in November 1964 to work at the Y-12 Plant as a nuclear critically safety specialist. He earned his doctorate at the University of Tennessee in 1972, then transferred to the Thermonuclear Division of ORNL and spent 20 years conducting theoretical and experimental research in fusion energy.

Charlie was active both on and off stage at the Oak Ridge Playhouse. He made his mainstage debut in “Once Upon a Mattress” in 1973 and enjoyed large and small roles in many plays. He was a member of the Playhouse board in the 1980s and was recognized with a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1995.

He held a commercial pilot certificate for nearly 20 years he owned a Cessna P206, in which he documented landings in 49 states. Much more about Charlie Crume is detailed in his obituary here.

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