Charles DeWayne Thornton, Sr. was born to Linda A. Gillespie and William (Bill) Hayes on March 25, 1970 in Nashville, TN and grew up in Haynes Garden Apartments. He accepted Christ at an early age at Holy Trinity Community Church and served as a member of Greater Grace Temple Church Deacon Board.
Charles was a 1988 graduate of Maplewood High School and a three-sport athlete, where he played football (running back), baseball, and a member of the wrestling team. In 1998, he would earn his Bachelor of Science Agricultural Business from Tennessee State University. For 24 years, Charles served the city of Nashville as an Operations Utility Technician, protecting the pipeline for Piedmont Nashville Gas.
Everyone who knew Charles knew he was a devoted father to Jordan D. Nelson, Sarah J. Thornton, Trinity M. Thornton, and Charles D. Thornton, Jr. Additionally, Charles loved watching Star Wars and Marvel Movies, men’s fashion and giving back to his community as a coach and referee.
Charles was preceded in death by his step-father Larry B. Gillespie and grandmother Julia Nancy Traylor.
Charles leaves to cherish his memory his children; mother, Linda A. Gillespie; William ( Bill) Hayes; his children’s devoted mother, Sonya Thomas; siblings, Joshua D. Thornton, Larry O. Gillespie, Sr., Lukita Gillespie-Thomas, Kathy Ivery Gillespie, Evelyn Gillespie; Alexis Gillespie, God-daughter/niece and Larry O. Gillespie, Jr., God-son/nephew; aunts and uncles, Charles S. Thornton (Deshaundra), William Traylor, Johnny Traylor; Albert Thornton, great-uncle, Marion Towns, great-aunt. A host of half brothers and sisters, cousins, nieces, nephews and friends.