Charles Robert “Charlie” Tufts, 33, of Milton passed away on Nov. 22, 2020 from complications of cystic fibrosis. He was at home and surrounded by his loving family and friends.
Charlie was born on Jan. 14, 1987 in Memphis, Tennessee, to Carolyn Virginia (Folger) Tufts. He was raised in Milton, went to Tucker Elementary School, and spent many days on Lothrop Avenue with his brothers and beloved friends from West Milton.
In 2005, Charlie graduated from BC High School, where he made many lifelong friends. He studied marketing at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth and graduated in 2010.
Charlie was a bright light and inspiration to all who knew him. To say he was funny would be a gross understatement. To say he loved sports does not begin to convey the passion, intensity, and enthusiasm with which he supported his teams, especially the Boston Celtics (he was the self-proclaimed biggest Celtics fan) and the Tennessee Vols.
To say he was courageous does not begin to describe the strength and resilience he displayed over the years as he dealt with the effects of the disease he was born with. He was always determined to live his life as best he could, and he remained resolute and hopeful in the face of the many challenges he faced. He was loving to his extensive network of family and friends and never forgot to say how much he appreciated them and all they did for him. They all would have gladly given much more if he asked them (which he very rarely did).
On his journey throughout the years, Charlie was cared for with deep love, respect, and devotion by the teams of doctors, nurses, and other specialists at Mass General’s cystic fibrosis, infectious disease, and lung transplant clinics, to whom his family will be forever grateful.
Charlie was a fierce advocate for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, a passion instilled in him and his brothers by his mother. In addition to attending the annual CF fund-raising walks, Charlie started a softball tournament which successfully raised tens of thousands of dollars for the CF Foundation of Massachusetts. In honor of his ongoing work for the foundation, Charlie was the 2018 recipient of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of Massachusetts’s Hope in Action Award.
He is survived by his loving and supportive siblings Peter Tufts and his fiancée Lisa Garvan, Andrew Tufts, Kris Kirkpatrick, and Rachael Kirkpatrick; foster son to Judy Whalen and Dennis Whalen; and brother to their children Dennis Whalen, Deborah Anglehart, and Dana McCarron.
Charlie is also survived by many loving and devoted relatives: his grandmother, Diane Tufts; his aunts and uncles, Charles and Jane Tufts, Jean Tufts, Peter Connelly, and Thomas Cotten; and his cousins Meredith Tufts, Evan and wife Holly Tufts, Caroline Connelly (his goddaughter), Avery Shea Huffman, and Carolyn Cotten.
One of Charlie’s most favorite roles in life was that of proud uncle. He leaves behind nieces Zoe Reeves, Alexis Kirkpatrick, his goddaughter Zoey Whalen, and nephews Cianan McCarron, Wesley Anglehart, and Theo Tufts.
He was a friend to everyone he met and will be missed by a group of friends who loved him unconditionally and who he loved the same way. The love of his family and friends carried Charlie through many difficult situations and he loved them deeply.
Charlie was predeceased by his adoring mother, Virginia (Folger) Tufts, and his aunts Varney (Folger) Rannells and Cindy (Folger) Cotten.
Due to the current pandemic, services were private but they were recorded. Based on Charlie's wishes, there will also be a celebration in 2021 for friends and family when the world is a safer place.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in memory of Charlie to support the nurses on Blake 6 at Massachusetts General Hospital or the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of Massachusetts/Rhode Island. Online donations may be made at https://because.massgeneralorg/charlietufts or given to cff.org/tribute/charlietufts.
Checks may be made payable and sent to Massachusetts General Hospital, MGH Development Office, Attn: Lily Guttentag, 125 Nashua St., Suite 540, Boston, MA 02114-1101 or Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Attn: Cindy Macgowan, 220 North Main St., Suite 104, Natick, MA 01760.