Robert C. Chapman
May 19, 1924 ‒ April 04, 2015
Mount Gilead, Ohio
On the Saturday of Easter Weekend, Robert Chapman went to be with his heavenly father.
Robert had been married to his wife Betty (Sautter) for just shy of 70 years, as they were high-school sweethearts. He was born in Union County, Ohio to the former Blanchard and Martha Chapman and graduated from Chesterville High School in 1942. After graduation, he served proudly in the US Navy during WWII and was in the third wave during the D-Day Normandy Invasion.
Following the service, he worked for 34 years in the Mount Gilead US Post Office. A tireless worker, he started out as the janitor and gradually rose through the ranks of clerk, city carrier, and then for 22 years served as the Post Master. Robert was also a licensed insurance agent with Motorists Mutual.
Robert loved to take his family camping with the couples! For years, as they raised their family, this group of friends went tent and trailer camping to East Harbor, Fort Laramie, Pokagon State Park, Mount Gilead Great Lakes Park, and others. For years, the family also observed their summer day-trips to the Columbus Zoo or canoeing the Mohican River. Above all, Robert & Betty loved to attend their kids’, and then their grand-kids’ sporting events. From summer softball, to football, basketball, baseball, soccer, volleyball, track, and cheerleading, he was always there for support.
He was a life-long member of the Williamsport United Methodist Church, serving in a variety of leadership positions. He was a leader in the year-long basement renovation project and worked there tirelessly in evenings and weekends. For over 20 years he was a proud member of the Senior Choir.
Robert and Betty had 15 great years of traveling after his retirement from the Post Office. They visited the great pyramids, the Holy Land, traveled across Europe, California, Hawaii, and dozens of other worldly spots.
As a civic leader, he served for years in the Mount Gilead Kiwanis Club. As club president, he was the driving force behind the development of the senior living apartments on Heritage Lane. He was a member of the American Legion for 50 years, and for a good number of those years he served on the selection committee for Boys State. He was a life-long Democrat, serving in several party leadership positions over the years, and he never failed to vote.
He was a self-reliant man; serving as his own carpenter, plumber, electrician and painter. To better support his family, he often took on second jobs, even while serving as Post Master.
Robert was a pillar of strength for his family when they suffered the loss of two dear children. As a parent, he was the steadfast foundation that withstood the loss of Leslie, age 15 in 1964, and Janice, age 7 in 1969.
Robert was preceded in death by his mother and father, brothers Charles and Carl, sister Ruth, son Leslie, and daughter Janice. He is survived by his wife Betty (Sautter), brother Oris, sons John (Vanessa) and Arlen (Sharon), and daughters Doris (Dan) Coldwell and Alice (David) Willeke. There are 10 grandchildren: Rachel Coldwell, Jessica Southard (Chapman), Luke Coldwell, Lindsey Shaffer (Chapman), Amanda Eckert (Chapman), Allison Chapman, Meghan Willeke, Mitchell Willeke, Matthew Chapman, and Mason Willeke. There are 4 great grandchildren: Dominic Eckert, Kimber Southard, Colt Southard, and Aria Eckert.
Robert had been a resident at Woodside Village Care Center since September of 2011. The family would like to especially thank their Director Ben Granger and their fine staff.
His family will greet friends from 4 – 7 p.m. on Wednesday, April 8th, at the Snyder Funeral Home, Craven Chapel, 67 N. Main St., Mount Gilead. Services honoring his life will also be held there at 11 a.m. on Thursday, with Pastor Gary Miller officiating. Burial with military honors provided by the VFW Post 8054 and AmVets Post 87 will follow in Bryn Zion Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Williamsport United Methodist Church, and they may be sent to the care of the funeral home.
Snyder Funeral Homes of Mount Gilead are honored to have been chosen to serve Robert’s family and your condolences may be expressed to them by visiting www.SnyderFuneralHomes.com.