Dr. Charles “Chuck” Lester Cronan passed away in the early hours of February 8th, 2022 at Columbia St. Mary’s hospital in Milwaukee, WI at the age of 77. He was born April 11, 1944 to Dan and Gertrude Cronan in Chicago, Illinois. In his teens, Chuck and his family relocated to California. After graduating high school, he attended Fresno State for his undergrad. For his masters he attended USC, where he may have accidentally become an extra in the movie The Graduate. Following his masters, Chuck moved to Pennsylvania to attend Lehigh University in Bethlehem, where he earned his PhD in Physical Chemistry in 1976, writing his thesis on Surface Studies of the Ni(OH)2/NiO System. While there, he met Betty J. Carabello, who became his wife of almost 50 years. After earning his Ph.D, Chuck and Betty moved to England for a short time before moving to the Milwaukee area to work at Miller Brewing “for just a few years”. They bought a house in the Village of Shorewood where they lived for over 40 years.
Chuck worked as a surface chemist at Miller until he retired in 2002. While there he was awarded a number of patents, and was especially proud of his patent for the Method and Apparatus for Detecting Relative Dynamic Liquid Surface Activity. Afterwards, he used his expertise to consult with breweries across the country. For decades, he was also a member of the American Chemical Society and MENSA.
Chuck had a love of learning and teaching others science. He was always reading, diving deep into subjects, and sharing what he learned with others. He enjoyed tutoring kids and mentoring grad students at Marquette University, where he worked for a short time after retiring from Miller. Chuck was always tinkering and building devices in his basement workshop. We would go into more detail here, but he explained them with too many words that we do not understand. He was always joking around and telling puns (the more annoyed the recipient is, the better the pun). Chuck enjoyed every second he could be with his two grandsons Benedict and Ulysses.
To them, he was “Pop-Pop”.
Chuck was preceded in death by his parents Dan and Gertrude Cronan, his mother and father-in-law Frank and Frances Carabello, and brother-in-law Tony Carabello. He is survived by his wife Betty, daughter Leah, son-in-law Jason Walker, grandsons Charles Benedict and Ulysses Walker, brothers Michael (Evelyn) and Stuart Cronan, brother-in-laws Paul (Rosemary), Natal (Gayle), and Fr. Frank Carabello, sister-in-law Stella (Tony) Carabello, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Chuck’s family will receive guests Sunday, April 3, 2022 from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM at Northshore Funeral Services Chapel. There will be a memorial service there at 11:00 AM.
To send sympathy gifts to the family or plant a tree in memory of Charles Lester Cronan “Chuck”, please visit our tribute store.