Charles Edmond Breene

Breene CharlesCharles Edmond Breene, of Oil City, passed away unexpectedly, Monday, July 27, 2015, at UPMC Hamot in Erie. He was 73 years of age.

Born December 3, 1941, in Oil City, Pennsylvania to the late Samuel A. and Elizabeth A. Berry Breene.

He attended the Hill School in Pottstown, PA, and graduated from Oil City High School in the Class of 1959 before attending the University of Colorado, Boulder.

In 1963 he enlisted with the Army National Guard serving with the 229th Field Artillery Battery C until his honorable discharge in 1969.

A longtime Western Pennsylvania businessman, he worked as a general agent in the insurance business in Pittsburgh starting in 1969. He was previously the owner of Transit Real Estate, which became Century 21 Real Estate in Oil City. Later, he became owner and President of Brookville Glove Manufacturing Co and Utilities and Industries Ltd. of Brookville and Reynoldsville, respectively. Upon his partnership with longtime friend and business associate Vince Dougherty the companies would become known as Dougherty Breene International or DBI Inc. He was a life member of the Pennsylvania Manufacturers Association.

He was a member of numerous clubs and civic organizations including the Duquesne Club in Pittsburgh, the Rolling Rock Club in Ligonier, the Erie Club, and, for many years, Wanango Country Club. Additionally, he was a member of Petrolia Lodge 363 F&AM, Venango Lodge of Perfection, New Castle Consistory, Cyrus Chapter 236, Occidental Council 41, Franklin Commandery 44 and Zem Zem Shrine. He was a three time Exalted Ruler of the Oil City Elks Lodge #344 and a member of the Oil City Eagles, Pulaski Club, PNA, Oil City VFW Post, and a life member of Safari International and the NRA. His time spent at these places brought joy to him and those around him in equal measure and were only outweighed by his love for his family. His cottage at Camp Barrymere, Ontario, held lifelong memories filled with the love and companionship of friends and family.

Charley was a well-known figure in Pennsylvania Republican politics. In 1989 he was appointed to serve as a member of the Pennsylvania State GOP Finance Committee and in 1996 he was elected as the Pennsylvania GOP State Committeeman for Venango County, a position in which he served until his death. Additionally, he served as regional chairman and hosted fundraisers for countless local, state, and national GOP candidates.

On May 14, 1982 he married Martha Faye Hetrick Ferry of Meadville and she survives. Also surviving are his two daughters Berry Taylor Breene of Pittsburgh and Angella Hetrick Ferry Scalise of Oil City; one son, Samuel Hetrick Breene of Washington DC and Oil City, PA; and one granddaughter Lillianna Scalise of Oil City.

He is also survived by two sisters, Abbie B. Hubert of Richmond, Virginia, and Virginia B. Wickwire of Wellesley, Massachusetts; his nieces Breene Farrington Wesson, Molly Wickwire Sante, and Cory Wickwire Halaby; and his dear friend and cousin, Elizabeth (Becky) Gilger.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his infant daughter Sydney Breene.

Morrison Funeral Home at 110 Petroleum Street, Oil City, PA is handling arrangements and viewings will be held there from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, July 31.

A funeral service will be held Saturday at 1 p.m. at Christ Episcopal Church, 16 Central Ave, Oil City.

Interment will be in Grove Hill Cemetery

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Shriners Hospital.

Please visit the Tribute Wall at to share a memory or leave a condolence.

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