Longtime South Florida medical insurance broker Charles “Chuck” Bortell Jr. passed away on Nov. 21 in Annapolis, Maryland, after complications from a heart attack he suffered while attending his 50th class reunion at the U.S. Naval Academy. He was 73.
Mr. Bortell was born in Biloxi, Mississippi, to a military family. He graduated from the USNA in 1967. During his first tour of duty, he served as a First Lieutenant on the destroyer escort USS Claud Jones, which won a Meritorious Unit Citation for special operations at the end of 1969. He served two tours in Vietnam as an officer-in-charge of mobile support teams in small unit, direct-action combat operations inserting and extracting U.S. Navy SEAL teams.
After the Navy, Mr. Bortell joined the medical insurance business in South Florida where he specialized in health insurance and benefits for professional yacht crew.
“Chuck will be remembered for his kind, loving, and witty nature, the joy he brought others, and above all, for his honor, altruism and commitment to service,” said he long-time partner, yacht broker Pam Barlow. “He spent countless hours working as a Blue and Gold Officer for the Naval Academy, assisting and mentoring Academy candidates. He was always willing to drop what he was doing to give advice or support to others in need.”
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in Mr. Bortell’s memory to Naval Academy Foundation, Class of 1967 50th Reunion Fund, 291 Wood Road, Annapolis, MD 21402; or The Nature Conservancy, Attn: The Treasury, 4245 N. Fairfax Drive, Suite 100, Arlington, VA 22203.