School Volunteer Charles Stableford Dies


Charles Vernon Stableford, of Falls Church, died on Nov. 21, 2019. He was 88 and fully engaged as a STEM volunteer supporting Mrs. Janet Lundin’s 8th grade Design Challenge Flex classes at Mary Ellen Henderson Middle School.

Stableford was born May 5, 1931 in Kingman, Arizona, son of the late Vernon Stableford and Frances Harris Stableford. He received a Master’s degree in Astronomy from the University of California, Berkeley. His adventures during his many years at TRW included work on Apollo where he received an Apollo Achievement Award, support to the 97th Congress House Committee on Ways and Means, time at sea with the U.S. Navy, and engagements with the European Space Agency.

This summer, in support of his STEM assignments, Charlie took the MIT Quantum computing course and was in the process of designing a Scratch-like tool kit to help teach students how to define problems in ways that would use the features of a quantum computer. He thought quantum computing might be possible when they reached adulthood. He was also working on a course to help students think through what would be involved in travel to Mars. He thoroughly enjoyed working with Mrs. Lundin and her students.

Surviving are his four sons — Charles Stableford, Jr. of Fairfax, David Stableford of Long Beach, California, Brian Stableford of London, England and Mark Stableford of Long Beach; and three grandchildren — Katie, Joe and Winter; and his partner, Priscilla Guthrie.

Over the last fifteen years, Stableford also volunteered at Allan Balliett’s biodynamic CSA in Shepherdstown, West Virginia and with Falls Church’s Habitat Restoration Team headed by Jeremy Edwards, where he learned a lot about sustainability. He will be buried in a private green burial at Cool Spring Natural Cemetery at Holy Cross Abbey in Bluemont, Virginia.

The Falls Church Education Foundation (FCEF) has set up the Stableford Science Fund to support the middle school science program that he and Mrs. Lundin taught. Contributions can be made as follows: Checks, payable to FCEF, with Stableford Science Fund in the memo, may be sent to: FCEF, 150 S. Washington St., Suite 400, Falls Church, VA. 22046 or online via, click on “donate now”, and indicate Stableford Science Fund in the designation. Arrangements are being handled by Enders & Shirley Funeral Home in Berryville, Virginia. To send condolences online, visit