Cover photo for Charles Pittman Cole, M.D.'s Obituary
Charles Pittman Cole, M.D. Profile Photo
1945 Charles 2022

Charles Pittman Cole, M.D.

November 30, 1945 — November 24, 2022

Dr. Charles Cole, 76, of Johnson City, went to his heavenly home on November 24, 2022, after a lengthy illness.

He was born in Rockwood, TN, on November 30, 1945, to the late James and Frances Cole. He graduated from Rockwood High School, the University of Tennessee, and the University of TN College of Medicine in Memphis. In 1969, he married his longtime sweetheart, Sharon Melton, and they spent 53 wonderful years together.

After completing his internship, he was inducted into the United States Army on orders to Vietnam. However, he was detained in San Antonio when he was chosen to help start the Army’s first Physician’s Assistant Program at Brooke Army Medical Center, which he greatly enjoyed. He then served six more years in the National Guard.

After leaving the Army, he returned to Memphis to complete a residency in Internal Medicine with a subspecialty in Pulmonary Medicine. He was boarded in Internal Medicine, Pulmonary Medicine, and Sleep Medicine.

He moved to Johnson City in 1976 and practiced medicine there for over forty years. He cared deeply for his patients and enjoyed getting to know them and their families. He participated in many medical associations and was especially proud to be an adjunct professor at Quillen College of Medicine and to serve on the Polysomnography Board at Roane State Community College.

Charlie loved the out-of-doors and found God through nature. He was an avid hiker, snow and water skier, and trout fisherman. He was very adventuresome—rafting the Colorado River three times, parasailing around the Matterhorn in Switzerland, and riding in a hot air balloon over the Sonoran Desert. He especially enjoyed the comradery of backpacking for several years with a group of special friends and spending time at his little cabin on Watauga Lake watching the wildlife.

Charles is survived by: his wife, Sharon; their two sons, Charles Pittman Cole Jr., Johnson City, and Matthew Melton Cole, and his wife, Christa, Knoxville; two precious granddaughters, Elsie and Penny Cole, Knoxville; his brother and sister-in-law, William and Pat Cole, Winter Park, FL; his sister-in-law Margaret Collignon, and her husband James, Brentwood, TN; his niece, Lynn Cole, Brisbane, Australia; a nephew, Jay Collignon, and his wife, Kaitlin, Brentwood TN; a special cousin/brother, Dick Cole, Knoxville; and the many other relatives on both sides of family whom he loved.

The family would like to thank his hardworking and compassionate caregiver, Kim Carter, as well as the special and caring staff of NHC Healthcare.

Charles was a member of St. John’s Episcopal Church where he worshipped and participated in activities for over 40 years. A celebration of his life will be held there 11:30 am Saturday, December 3, 2022, with The Rev. Dr. Laura A. Bryant officiating. The family will receive friends from 10:30 am to 11:30 am Saturday at St. John’s Episcopal Church. A private committal will be held on a later date at Oak Grove Cemetery in Rockwood, TN, in the Cole burial plot.

For those who wish, memorials may be sent to St. John’s Episcopal Church Organ Fund, 500 N Roan Street, Johnson City, TN 37601; the Nature Conservancy, 2 Maryland Farms, Suite 150, Brentwood, TN 37027 (; or a charity of your choice.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Charles Pittman Cole, M.D., please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Saturday, December 3, 2022

10:30 - 11:30 am (Eastern time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Memorial Service

Saturday, December 3, 2022

Starts at 11:30 am (Eastern time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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