Charlie A. Olson

January 23, 1930 - March 21, 2020
Charlie A. Olson

Charlie A. Olson, 90, of Parsons and beloved longtime owner and operator of Olson’s Ace Hardware, passed away at 9 p.m., Saturday, March 21, 2020, at the Elmhaven Nursing Home in Parsons.

He was born on January 23, 1930 at Angola, Kansas to Carl and Pearl (Brooks) Olson. He grew up in the Mound Valley area and attended country schools and Labette County Community High School graduating in 1948.

He moved to Independence where he lived for two years before moving to Parsons where he worked at Cloonan Motors. Charlie served in the United States Army during the Korean War. He returned to Parsons following his honorable discharge.

In 1955 he went to work at Alderman’s Hardware and Implement. The following year he became a partner in the business with Jim Alderman and in 1969 purchased Mr. Alderman’s interest in the business and it became Olson’s Ace Hardware.

Charlie was well-known, respected and beloved throughout the local community through serving customers at his store for many years. He was dedicated to his family, employees, and customers. He was a gentle, kind, and thoughtful man who enjoyed his work, keeping up his yard, going square dancing with his wife, and scouts. Charlie was very active in the Ace Hardware franchise serving as past president of the National Hardware Association. He was a recipient of the Parsons Chamber of Commerce Zetmier Legacy Award and was a Grand Marshall of the Parsons Christmas Parade. He was also a member of First Baptist Church in Parsons.

He and Rosie Powers were united in marriage on December 14, 1949 at the Methodist Church in Altamont. She preceded him in death on November 22, 2011.

Charlie is survived by his daughter, Nancy Olson of Parsons; four grandchildren, Ben Ryan, and his wife, Beth of Parsons, Aja Shroll, and her husband Dean of Dallas, Michael Olson and his wife Jessica of Parsons, and Kristen Talley of Parsons; seven grandchildren, Abby Ryan, Colton Ryan, and Kaitlyn Ryan of Parsons, Jaycee Olson and Xzavier Olson of Parsons, and Keiran Schroll and Ean Shroll of Dallas; several nieces and nephews; and his present and former family at Olson’s Ace Hardware. In addition to his wife, Rosie, Charlie was preceded in death by his son, Robert “Bobby” Olson on January 6, 2011 and two sisters, Joan Mathis and Shirley McKinney.

Private services will be held at the Carson-Wall Funeral Home, Thursday morning, March 26, 2020 with Joe Mathis officiating. Burial will follow in the Memorial Lawn Cemetery. The funeral procession will process by Olson’s Ace Hardware prior to arriving at Memorial Lawn Cemetery. The public is encouraged to gather near the store at 10:45 a.m., Thursday, to honor Charlie and support the family. Friends may call the funeral home on Wednesday after 9 a.m. at their convenience to sign the register. Memorials are suggested to the Labette Community College for the Charlie and Rosie Olson Scholarship Fund and these may be left at or mailed to the funeral home 112 N. 26th St., P.O. Box 942, Parsons, KS 67357. Online condolences may be left at