The family received friends at Oil City United Pentecostal Church, 701 LA 1 South, Oil City, LA 71061 from 5 until 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014. A “Celebration of Life Service” was held at 11 a.m., Sunday, Sept. 28, 2014, at Oil City United Pentecostal Church. Officiating the service was the Rev. Michael Rathbun Ensey (grandson), North American Youth President, UPCI, assisted by the Rev. Kent Rhoads, Pastor of Oil City United Pentecostal Church, the Rev. Larry Bass (cousin), the Rev. Larry Gandy (son-in-law) and the Rev. Randy Ensey (son-in-law). Interment followed at Lakeview Memorial Gardens in Oil City.
Born Dec. 7, 1930, to parents Charles Burton Rathbun and Maggie Mae Allen Rathbun, Charles Benard Rathbun departed this world surrounded by his children and grandchildren, ending his journey of life and stepping into the hands of our Heavenly Father. His life was lived as a legacy of love, friendship, helping others, family and devotion to Jesus Christ.
Charles married Elsie Marie Densmore August 21, 1949, and recently celebrated 65 years of marriage. To their union three children were born, Judy Rathbun Gandy, Charles Michael Rathbun and Janice Rathbun Darnell. His parents, his son, Charles Michael Rathbun, as well as his brothers, Glenn Rathbun and Darryl Rathbun, preceded him in death. Today, he has the joy of a glad reunion in Heaven.
Charles is survived by his wife, Elsie Densmore Rathburn; his daughters, Judy Rathburn Gandy and Janice Rathbun Darnell; his sister, Linda Rathbun Grigsby; his brother, Donald Rathbun; one daughter-in-law, Dovey Luce Rathbun Ensey; three sons-in-law, the Rev. Larry Gandy, the Rev. Randy Ensey and Kenneth Darnell; seven grandchildren, Charles Brian Rathbun Ensey (and Stacey), the Rev. Michael Rathbun Ensey (and Rebecca), Shanda Holihan (and David), Carla Gandy, Lori Green (and Kurt), Candace Smith (and Dustin) and Jonathan Ensey (and Molly); and 15 great-grandchildren, Brooke Speir, Connor Holihan, Alexander Ensey, Nicholas Ensey, Jaidon Gandy, Lincoln Ensey, Jack Ensey, Grant Ensey, Hannah Smith, Dyllan Smith, Grey Ensey, Adessa Green, Avery Ensey, Annie Ensey and Avalynn Green to carry on his legacy of life and his desire to help others find the peace and joy he experienced in devoting and living his life for God.
During his time on this earth, Charles touched many lives and made a positive impact on everyone he came in contact with. He was a strong man, physically and spiritually, and he led by example. He was an extremely hard worker, spending most of his career in the Texas and Louisiana oil and gas industry.
He was an active member of Oil City United Pentecostal Church fulfilling many different roles including being a member of the church board for fifteen years. He was also a very important part of his community serving in numerous capacities throughout the years, including the following: Councilman, Gusher Day Chairman, Water Board, Cemetery Board and many others. Even after his retirement, he continued to stay active. His favorite hobby was cutting down trees and splitting wood. He enjoyed spending time with his family, working on his properties and volunteering his time to many church and community projects.
Honoring him as pallbearers were Dustin Smith, Kurt Green, David Holihan, Connor Holihan, Nathaniel Rathbun, David Densmore and Don Rathbun. Serving as honorary pallbearers were Ronnie Smith and Johnny Smith.