Richard LeRoy Chapman


Richard LeRoy Chapman, 79, of Centennial, Colorado passed away unexpectedly on March 31, 2011. Survivors include Marilyn (Nicholson) Chapman, his loving wife of 55 years, five children: Dr. Catherine Hoff (Steve) of Brentwood, TN, Robert Chapman of Watertown, SD, Michael Chapman (Christina) of Bel Air, MD, Stephen Chapman (Stacey) of Alpharetta, GA, and Amy Johnson (Mark) of Pearland, TX; sister-in-law June(Maurice) Ayers; numerous step sisters and cousins; 17 grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Richard "Dick" Chapman was born February 4, 1932 in Yankton, SD to Raymond and Vera Chapman. He graduated Brookings High School in 1950. An avid public speaker, Dick was one of four National Winners of the "I Speak for Democracy" contest in 1949, as well as a leader in the Debate and Speech team in high school, earning the State Championship in 1950. He continued to excel in public speaking activities at South Dakota State College and became Student Body VP, graduating in 1954. The following year he attended Cambridge University (UK) as a Rotary Fellow, and subsequently earned his MPA (Syracuse Univ. 1958), and PhD (Syracuse Univ. 1967). Dick also served as a commissioned officer (1955-1957) in the U.S. Army in Korea and was awarded the Army Commendation Medal at the end of his active service. Subsequently, Dick was Honorably Discharged as a Captain in the USAR in 1964. Dick's professional career was devoted to research in public policy; he authored numerous publications and was highly regarded in his field, earning the Jefferson Award for his contributions to the field of Technology Transfer.

Civic and community involvement was a pillar of Dick's life: he served on both the senior staff of the Government Operations Committee (1966-1967) and was Staff Director for the Hon. Frank Denholm (1973-1974) in the U.S. House of Representatives. He was associated with the Brookings Lodge #24 A.F. and A.M. in South Dakota, the South Dakota State University Foundation (President two years, many more in leadership), Knights Templar, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Denver Water Board, and as a member of the Citizen's Budget Committee, he helped found the city of Centennial, CO. He co-authored God Bless America: Patriotic Fervor or Historic Reality? His passion for leadership and teaching extended into his spiritual life at Mission Hills Church (Littleton, CO) and most recently as an active member at Our Father Lutheran Church in Centennial, CO. He was active in the Forgotten Treasures ministry, and he was a supporter of the Denver Seminary.

For details please see; in lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Denver Seminary.


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