Charles Cole, a former longtime resident of Venice and Santa Monica Bay area businessman, died of heart failure recently in Thailand. He was 61.

Cole, a graduate of Venice High School, was active in the Theater Arts Department, where he often starred opposite popular actress, Laurie Prange.

He was working in the resort industry and as a marketing consultant at the time of his death, said his brother, Allan.

A Vietnam War era veteran, Cole was a master sergeant in the U.S. Army, serving his country for seven years.

Fluent in seven languages, including Arabic, Cole worked as an international marketing consultant.

He is survived by his son, Chris, of Las Vegas; and his brothers Allan, Andrew, of Boca Raton, Fla., and David, of Hawthorne.