Susie L. Whigham
Charles L. Whigham
Charles L. Whigham was born in Sparta, Georgia, in 1921. He moved to New Jersey and from Malcolm X. Shabazz High School, he went on to attend and graduate from the Renouard School of Embalming in New York thus enabling him to found Whigham Funeral Home in 1946 and serve as President. In subsequent years, Charles performed duties as President of the Essex County and Union County Funeral Directors Association besides being a member of numerous other community organizations. Charles was also a faithful member of the Metropolitan Baptist Church for nearly 50 years, serving in the position as trustee for over 30 years. As an avid political enthusiast, he assisted as a campaigner for Newark's first black mayor, Kenneth Gibson as well as Mayor Sharpe James. In the same manner as Whigham Funeral Home, Charles organized and founded the state’s first minority-owned and operated bank, City National Bank where he administered as President, CEO, and Chairman of the Board.
Charles L. Whigham’s noble services have earned him many accolades including “Charles L. Whigham Day” being declared three different times (one by Mayor Gibson, one by Mayor Sharpe James, and one by the County Executive Thomas J. D'Alessio) and the dedication and naming of “Charles L. Whigham Square” by Newark Municipal Council (at the corner of Green Street and Broad, where the first and main branch of City National is located).
Charles L. Whigham has dedicated his entire life to serving others, oftentimes sacrificing his personal time with friends and family to do so, including to console and guide bereaving families. His life is an admirable example for all of those who have had the honor of working with him throughout the years. While Charles L. Whigham made his transition on Nov. 7, 1993, his legacy through Whigham Funeral Home continues to pass down to three generations of servants who are dedicated to upholding his fundamentals of making families feel welcomed and comforted while providing them with an honorable recognition of the life and memory of their loved ones so that they may experience a service always remembered.