Retired Army Brig. Gen. Charles H. Grahl, 86, a veteran of the Mexican Border campaign and World War I who served with the Selective Service from 1950 to 1960, died Monday at the Herman M. Wilson Health Care Center in Gaithersburg after a stroke.

Gen. Grahl moved to this area in 1950 and joined the planning division of the Selective Service System. When he retired from the Army 10 years later, he was an assistant to the system's director, Gen. Lewis B. Hershey. l

Gen. Grahl was a native of Council Bluffs, Iowa, and a private with the Iowa National Guard in the Mexican border campaign in 1916. During World War I, he was a combate veteran of the 42nd (Rainbow) Infantry Division. He was commissioned during the war.

From 1932 until he moved to Washington, he was adjutant general of the Iowa National Guard and Iowa state director of Selective Service.

Gen. Grahl's decorations included the Distinguished Service Medal and the Legion of Merit.

He was a longtime resident of Bethesda, where he was a member of the United Methodist Church, the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Welcome Wagon and the American Legion.

He was a 32nd degree Mason and a member of the Retired Officers and National Guard associations.

Survivors include his wife, Magdalan P., of Gaithersburg; two sons, retired Air Force Col. Charles P. of Greenville, Ohio, and Robert L., of Potomac; a sister, Gertrude Trenery of Pomona, Calif., eight grandchildren, and one great-grandchild.

The family suggests that expressions of sympathy be in the form of contributions to the Herman M. Wilson Health Care Center in Gaithersburg, or to the United Methodist Church of Bethesda.