The Life Reflections of Charles Harris Sr.
December 28, 1953, Charles Edward Harris was born in Baltimore, Maryland to mother, Cora
Louise (Johnson) Hampton and father, the late John Edward Harris. “Jody” as he was
affectionally known was one of the apples of his mother’s eye and the eldest of four children
born to Cora Louise. From the age of 11, Jody and his siblings were being raised in a blended
family of eight children where he remained the Big Brother. Jody grew up with the support and
unity of family in a loving home created by his mom and dad, Melton Hampton Sr. Jody was
preceded in death by his father, maternal and paternal grandparents, and uncle, James Lyons.
Growing up, Jody loved being the big brother (boss). His brothers and sisters were his first
friends and playmates. They were raised to be close and to take care of each other… and they did
just that. In addition, he was close with his late uncle, James. They were like brothers. As one of
her first loves, his mother recounts her bond with Jody as one of the truest relationships she’s had
in her life. Even though it was a lot of work, his mom expressed there were more Ups than and
downs in her experiences of young motherhood. According to Mom Hampton, “Jody wasn’t a
bad kid. He was just busy… always getting into something and getting the other kids in it too.”
Like many kids his age, Jody was full of mischief and wonder. Of course, there were times his
curiosity got the best of him. Throughout his life, Jody spent a great deal of time with family and
making dozens of awesome memories. Although, he came from a family of quick-witted
jokesters, that gene seemed to have passed him by. His niece, Brandy chuckled as she recalled,
“It took Uncle Jody forever to catch onto a joke; and by the time everyone was done laughing,
here he’d come catching on at the end and just bust out laughing (only to start everyone laughing
all over again).” Jody loved spending time with family and never missed gatherings when able to
Jody was educated in the Baltimore City Public Schools and was a proud alumnus of Patterson
High School. In 1972, following high school Private Charles Edward Harris enlisted and served
in the United States Army until completing his tour and receiving an honorable discharge. As a
young man, Jody returned to one of his greatest passions, family.
In 1979, he started his own family when he married Cheryl Harris. Their union was blessed with
two children, Charles Edward Jr. and Chake’e Monique. Jody was a proud father who loved his
children deeply. He was committed to showing his children the deep family love he had been
taught as a child. He took pride in his children knowing that he loved them and that he would be
there for them whenever he was able. Jody thanked God for blessing him with his children, eight
grandchildren and one great-grandbaby. Jody loved his entire family; and definitely was a
protector of everyone he loved. Although he was a cool guy, don’t get it twisted, he would go off
in a minute and pull out his 2x4 or bat to show you he was not to be played with. “Try Jesus not
Over the years Jody developed a few more passions. He became a huge lover of African culture
and often wore authentic African garments. He really liked tinkering with gadgets and
electronics. He was always the first to buy anything new that came out he. He was a music lover
and enjoyed jazz. One of his favorite things to do on Sundays after church was to go eat at the
Golden Corral. He became the family photographer and could be seen at all the family events
snapping pictures and capturing the love.
Jody knew love. Early on he’d been taught by his grandmother, Cora Bell Johnson, the love of
Jesus Christ. At 14 years old he professed his faith and became a baptized Christian. Jody was a
faithful believer of Jesus Christ and he made sure everyone around him knew Jesus. He made a
point of picking up his loved ones and getting them to church. Even through all his challenges,
Jody credits Jesus Christ for saving him from his addiction and blessing him with the gift of
recovery. Jody was clean over 25 years and was faithful to the ministries that helped him. He
was a faithful member of Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church since August 1987. He served
on the Deacons Board and in the Men’s Ministry. He was also employed by the church for over
20 years. “Blessed Assurance” was the Jody’s testimony. He trusted God’s grace and mercy were
his sufficiency. On August 25, 2021, after a lengthy bout with illness, Charles Edward Harris
was called from labor to reward.
He leaves to cherish his memory his loving and devoted parents Cora Louise Hampton and
Melton Hampton Sr.; his beloved children Charles Harris Jr. and Chake’e Monique Harris, his
adored grandchildren, Angel, Christine, Brianna, Kendall, Allison, Charles, Nicholas, and
Bryson; and precious great-granddaughter, Rosalina; his treasured siblings, Deborah Cox
(Rommie), James “Jimmy” Johnson (Geraldine), Eugene Johnson, Melton “Skip” Hampton Jr.
(Leslie), Debra Hampton, Eugene Hampton (Danette) and Donna Hampton; his forever-friend
and former spouse, Cheryl Harris; his aunt Barbara “Bobbie” Lyons; a host of nieces, nephews,
cousins, and friends.
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