Charter loved the outdoors and wildlife

2013-08-26 00:00

GRAEME Charter (62), former chief executive officer of the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board, who died unexpectedly on Wednesday morning due to breathing difficulty, was a “born leader”, Shan, his wife of 40 years, said yesterday.

Charter, who retired as the second head of the Sharks Board in 2008, had returned early with his wife from a trip to the Kruger National Park, Botswana and Zimbabwe. They were scheduled to have returned to Durban on Friday.

“We’d been away for a month. At least we were able to share these good times together,” Shan Charter said yesterday.

Charter is survived by Shan and son and daughter, Craig and Keryn.

Charter was the second CEO of the Sharks Board after Beulah Davis.

“He went to school in Empangeni. Throughout his 40 years at the Sharks Board he had a personal and intimate connection with his employees.

“He had a sense of humour that kept us all on our toes and laughing for hours,” said his daughter Keryn Brien.

Charter started as a field officer at the Natal Sharks Board in 1968. He was promoted director of the board in 1990 and was appointed its chief executive officer.

He had many community interests and accolades under his belt, including being the discoverer of the electro-magnetic pulse for shark repulsion, co-author of a book on shark attacks in South Africa, chairperson of the Ambulance and Emergency Medical Service Aquatic Rescue Coordinating Committee, founding member of the National Sea Rescue Institute in Durban and was a deputy unit leader for the National Police Rescue Diving Unit.

“He was always worried about others and would go out of his way to help wherever he could.

“His interests were really about being outdoors, wildlife, birds, animals. Since he retired, my parents have travelled South Africa, Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe extensively.”

Brien said her father was an incredible man, well-respected and loved by many.

A funeral service will be held on Wednesday at St Martin-in-the-fields Church, Durban North.

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