Charles R. Powell


Charles R. Powell, 67, of Bemidji, MN died Thursday, March 9, 2023 at his home.

Charles was born February 5, 1956, to Romaine R. Powell and Barbara A. Powell at the old Lutheran hospital (now Baker Park) in Bemidji, MN. He walked half of a block home at 717 Beltrami Ave. to attend Central Elementary School in Bemidji from kindergarten through the 6th grade. Beginning in 1966, in the 4th grade, at age 10, he played drums and, periodically, the organ, in rock’n’roll bands including The Enemies, The Essays, and The Whip, with his lifelong friends Bill Tibbetts, Mike Moeller, and Miles Parkhurst, for four years until 1970.

Charles attended junior and senior high schools in Bemidji, graduating in 1974. He then attended Bemidji State University and obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology in 1983, graduating Summa Cum Laude. Charles then went to law school at the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks and obtained a Doctor of Jurisprudence degree in 1986, graduating Magna Cum Laude.

Charles was a trial lawyer with the Powell Law Firm in Bemidji. He started his legal career working as an investigator/paralegal at the firm beginning in 1981. He had the unparalleled privilege and honor of practicing law with his legendary father, Romaine Powell, for 24 years until Romaine’s retirement in 2005. The highlight of his legal career came in 1987 when, in the only case he tried together with his father, Charles watched his dad beat the lawyers who later obtained the $5.3 billion jury verdict in the Exxon Valdez oil spill lawsuit.

Charles very much enjoyed spending time with Kathi Jean Thomas, his significant other, their English Springer Spaniels, Baxter and Biscuit, and his friends. Charles enjoyed downhill and water skiing, taking photographs, researching, reading, writing, learning, philosophizing, and surfing the web. He also enjoyed listening to and collecting a diverse collection of classic rock vinyl LPs and watching classic movies and series on Netflix and on DVDs in front of a wood burning fireplace. He always enjoyed playing drums and organ, and vacationing in exotic locales.

He was preceded in death by his mother, Barbara Ann Powell and his father Romaine Ralph Powell. He is survived by his sons, Eran (Marcie) Young and James (Gina) Powell, 5 grandchildren, and his special friend and significant other, Kathi Jean Thomas, his high school sweetheart and the one true love of his life.

There will be no services or funeral. Condolences may be left at

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