Founder of the Country Star News

CAROLINA CHARLIE

NOVEMBER 21 Happy Birthday
My Love ... not a day goes by that I don't think about you. Sometimes I swear I can still feel your cheek against mine. We were one. You were a great father, my best friend — indeed my true soulmate. You put up with me and I put up with you and I wouldn't of had it any other way.
 
Some of my great moments in life were with you. I learned not to stress ... you got up each day and you did the best you could ...  because like you always reminded me thats really all you can do anyway. 
 
The lessons I learned from you are not only invaluable but they have given great meaning to my life.
 
You taught me much about life and the music. We worked together on the radio and founded the Country Star News together. 
 
As a team we accomplished things we never knew we could. And we thought we were rich. My momma said we could never be rich monetarily because we were always giving it away. But make no mistake about it, we were rich — in life.
 
You were my first mentor as a journalist. (Marie Osmond, Smithfield Ham festival). When you finished editing my story, I was so proud to know that I had written my first country music article and you actually published it. 
 
What a journey with you — straight of the world of country music. When you were dying you looked at me and said, "When I'm gone, I'll will still always be with you and I will always love you."
 
 And you are and I will always love you.
 
Little did you know that I would go on the write many stories, but my greatest story is yet to be written. I will name it after the song you always sang to me, "I Always Get Lucky With You."
 
You are my heart.
                                                                              —Just Me Millie

 REPRINT FROM THE DAILY PRESS

`Carolina Charlie' Wiggs, Local Country Music Legend 

September 04, 1993 | By NELDA KNEMEYER, Daily Press 

 

  VIRGINIA BEACH — At the end of each show, country music fans heard the strains of "Most Richly Blessed", by Archie Campbell, and knew "Carolina Charlie" was again signing off the air. On Thursday, Sept. 2, local radio legend Charles D. "Carolina Charlie" Wiggs Sr., died. He was 61. 

  The name he was best known as, "Carolina Charlie," came from a suggestion by a Virginia Beach club owner in the 1950's because Mr. Wiggs was from North Carolina. The man felt it would give him more recognition. Apparently, he was right. 

  The first night he and his band, the Sunset Valley Boys, appeared with his new name, the club was packed. The following Monday, Wiggs had "Carolina Charlie" painted on his guitar. 

Mr. Wiggs began singing and playing in country music bands after he graduated from Portsmouth's Craddock High School in 1949. 

  While he was working as an insurance agent in 1961, he enrolled in a radio course offered by WCMS-AM (1050). Within two days, they put him on the air. From the very beginning he had his finger on the country music scene. His afternoon show was the most popular on any radio station. 

  At the same time, he was singing and playing with The Four C's which was the number one country group in the area. After the band broke up in 1969, Mr. Wiggs played in other bands, including The Heavy Cowboys. Over the years, he was the opening act for most of the Grand Ole Opry stars that performed in this area. 

  Mr. Wiggs left WCMS in 1976 to work at WNIS-AM (850), which played country music before it became an all-talk station. He then worked for a variety of stations during the late 1970s and 1980s. He joined WPEX-AM (1490) in 1985 where he worked on and off until October 1991 when the station went gospel. 

  Though he often credited luck for his long career as a country music singer, radio announcer and publisher, people who knew him best saw it differently. 

  His partner, wife and best friend, Millie Wiggs, claimed that he had something vital to a career such as his: charisma. "When he was on stage, people watched him. He was a star," she said. 

   In 1987, Mr. Wiggs and his wife started The Country Star, a free monthly newspaper on the country music scene. The first issue appeared on July 4, 1987. It contained the first installment of Notes and Rumors, the popular monthly column which ran in the Daily Press' inRoads magazine each Friday. 

   In June of this year he started another newspaper Country Kids. Mr. Wiggs loved children and wanted to encourage their love of country music. The newspaper is written by and for kids up to the age of 16, but even grown-ups love it. 

   A longtime friend and co-worker at The Country Star, Cindy Tickler, remembers Mr. Wiggs as "super to work for. He really told things like they were. You know, he didn't worry about himself, he worried about everyone else around him." 

Mr. Wiggs' generosity and willingness to perform for charities was well-known. Tickler said this generosity was not limited to big-name functions.

"Sure he attended and performed in a lot of fund-raisers, but he would do anything for someone he knew was in need. He'd help pay someone's hospital bill and contributed to more charities than I can list. He never met a stranger. If he had any enemies, I never knew about them." 

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