He was born Nov. 25, 1938, in Greenwood, Miss., the son of Richard and Irene (Hester) Mills.
Mr. Mills served in the U.S. Navy in the 1950s. He retired from Shawnee County Public Works on Dec. 3, 2000, after 20 years of service.
He was an active member of Local Union No. 696 since 1977. He was also a member of Fraternal Order of Eagles Aerie No. 58 in Topeka and Lawrence. He served as a past president, held state offices and regularly participated in the Ritual Team.
He married Brenda J. Wilson on March 11, 1958, in Poplar Bluff, Mo. She survives of the home.
Other survivors include a son, Charles R. Jr., Topeka; three daughters, Glenda Sumner and Angel Mills, both of Topeka, and Rhoda Mills, Hudson, Tex.; three brothers, Richard, Topeka, Lloyd and Rick, both of Syracuse, N.Y.; four sisters, Roberta Weber, Arkansas City, Joyce Barksdale, Topeka, Shirley Fowler, Cottle, W.Va., and Sherry Duncan, Americus; his step-mother, Dolly Mills, Americus; and three grandchildren.
An infant son, Richard Reed, died earlier.
The family suggests memorials to cancer research, sent in care of Southwest Baptist Church, 2901 S.W. Eveningside Drive, Topeka 66614.