"His life should be a lesson for climbers today....you don't have to blow your horn, if your life has real substance the horn blows for you."
What Chuck taught me is horns don't matter, blown purposely or not. Recognition, status, place in history, even place in the memories of climbers as on this thread about him - relevant only if he found them so for himself. Just as his "withdrawing" from the stage or not writing more are also irrelevant or relevant only to him.
Yes, he and his way may be relevant to us as we remember him and draw lessons from him for our own selves. But they are only our speculations from outside him. What only matters is if he was solid with himself and his decisions. Was he? Probably like all of us, some yes, some no. Such is life.
Because there were fewer climbers in the 60s, those of us with modest ability still got to climb with the best. I was fortunate to climb frequently with Chuck in '66 and '67, often being awakened by him standing next to my sleeping bag with the rack already assembled. When climbs had been newly freed, he liked to go back to them. In '65 Steve Thompson and Chris Fredericks had done the FFA of the East Buttress of Lower Cathedral Rock, and in '66 Chuck and I went there. I led the pitch below the hard one -- the Fissure Beck, where a layback was straightforward but intimidating, 5.7 once you made your mind up to go for it. I couldn't see Chuck leading the hard pitch (the next one), but the rope paid steadily out. He called down, "I think I'm at the hard part," and the rope kept going at the same rate when he called again, "Yep, that's 5.10." Above the hard moves, the climbing is easy for another 30 feet to the belay, and the rope kept going at the same pace.