LUFKIN, TX (KTRE)- We talked to residents in downtown Lufkin and at Starbucks, where they say Charlie Wilson was a regular. They describe him as a personable man, who made a significant impact in the community.
"He was just really easy going, easy to laugh," said Cheryl Walls who met Wilson.
"He used to come here a lot and he's just an all around personable guy," said co-owner of the Downtown Café Marsha Osborn.
"He's done a lot for the veteran services. He's worked hard on getting our benefits raised and stuff like that and you know, helping us out," said veteran Joseph Williams.
"He's always kind, he'd talk to everybody," said Starbucks barista Judah Mcalister who wore suspenders on Thursday in honor of Wilson.
"When I heard, I thought, not Charlie, you know because, I'd always enjoy listening to him. He'd always have something inspiring to say," said Alice Russ who knew Wilson.
"He's meant a lot to the economic development and definitely helped us with many things," said a neighbor of Wilson's, Ernest Patrick.
Patrick's wife, Karen, described Wilson as a man with a big heart. "We're very, very proud to have had not only Charlie as a neighbor but also, my husband is a Vietnam veteran and we're very, very proud of our new VA clinic."
"I guess just seeing him every day, walking around Crown Colony. He always had a big smile on his face. He always looked happy," said neighbor Summer McCoy.
"Charlie was a big advocate for the hospital systems here. Temple is going to miss him because he's been a big advocate for what has happened. As you drive past those buildings, Charlie Wilson has a lot to do with why those buildings are there," said Dick Bobodeker.