Obituary of Chuck Otto
It is with great sadness we announce that Charles “Chuck” Otto, died peacefully in his 86th year surrounded by family on Tuesday September 28th. Chuck was born in Vác, Hungary on December 19, 1935. He studied architecture at the Budapest University of Technology and Economics. In 1956, his final year of education was interrupted by the Soviet invasion of Hungary. Chuck escaped the occupation by walking for three days, 200km west from Budapest to the Austrian border. He was transferred to a refugee camp outside of Venice, Italy and immigrated to Canada along with 33 thousand other Hungarians. Chuck then settled in Toronto where he worked for several of the city’s leading architectural firms focusing on commercial design. At Shore and Moffat, Chuck worked on the 15 storey Mackenzie Building to house Government of Canada offices at 30 Adelaide Street East. While at K.R. Cooper, Chuck helped design the 17 storey Canada Square building at 2200 Younge St, which rests atop of the Eglington subway station. After building his own modernist home north of Toronto, Chuck relocated to Kingston and joined Dominick Thompson and Mallette Architects where he was involved in the design of several area buildings, notably, Regiopolis-Notre Dame Catholic High School, and Archbishop O'Sullivan Catholic School. Chuck became a developer and purchased the Steacy’s department store at 118 Princess St., renovating the 120-year-old building into a shopping mall.
Chuck was a man with vision who was ahead of his time. He was a devoted family man who strove to give his children a better life than he had following his experiences as a child in WWII during the siege of Budapest, and later as a young immigrant having been forced to flee Hungary. Chuck and his first wife Pat (mother to Christian and Nicole) were foster parents to ten children, many remaining in touch into their golden years. Chuck and his second wife Ruth (mother to Jordyn and Eric) made their home in Kingston Township where they raised their family. Chuck taught all his children to alpine ski at an early age and spent countless winter weekends with them on the slopes of Quebec’s Outaouais region. He completed his last few runs at the age of 79 with his two sons and 2-year-old grandson. Chuck was an adventurer at heart. He and his wife Reeda (mother to Thalia and Faye) enjoyed trips to Cuba, Mexico, and Panama, and frequent cruises. In 2018 they completed a round-the-world cruise visiting 24 countries, and in 2020 they circumnavigated South America.
Grieving his loss are his cherished wife Reeda Otto, his children, Christian (Jessica), Jordyn (Nelson), Eric, Nicole (Shane), Thalia (Peter), Faye (AJ), his grandchildren, Daemon, Ethan, Liam, Marek, niece, Ildiko, and grandniece, Orshi.
Chuck was predeceased by his parents, Joseph and Elizabeth, sister Marika, and his second wife Ruth.
The family will receive friends at the James Reid Funeral Home, 1900 John Counter Blvd., Kingston, on Thursday, September 30, from 5-7:30pm. A Funeral Service will be held at 2pm on Friday, October 1, 2021, in the chapel of the funeral home, followed by the interment at the Cataraqui Cemetery. Due to Covid restrictions seating for the service is limited, please RSVP by calling the James Reid Funeral Home at 613-544-3411. Social distancing and masks mandatory.