Gary Arlen Chapman of Newark, DE sadly passed away on April 1, 2022. Born in Columbus, OH, Gary grew up in Ashland, OH and attended Ohio State University, graduating with a Bachelor of Finance degree. Upon graduation, Gary enlisted in the Army as a commissioned officer. He proudly served his country in the Vietnam War as a member of the 82nd airborne paratrooper division, which he found to be exhilarating. Upon his release from the army, Gary relocated to Wilmington, DE for a job at DuPont. He served as a finance manager for several decades before relocating to North Carolina to finish out his career with Remington Arms.
He was a huge sports enthusiast. Gary enjoyed running and completed the New York Marathon in 1982. He had a deep passion for youth sports and spent tireless hours coaching his son, Chip, in little league baseball and basketball. However, his fervor did not end there; Gary had a part time job as a high school and college football referee and spent many weekends traveling to football games to support the community. In his retirement years, Gary spent his Saturdays in the press box managing the University of Delaware’s football game clock. He also relished the game of golf and one of his favorite memories was serving as an usher at the Masters tournament. Gary was the biggest Ohio State football fan imaginable and if the Buckeyes were playing, you knew where to find him, screaming in joy and dancing to the thumping marching band.
Gary will be remembered as a family man who embodied the classic characteristics of being engaging and inspiring to everyone around him. He was a rock for many people besides his immediate family, and often could be found in conversation with his daughter, Tara, as a listening ear who provided advice, humorous insight, and overall words of wisdom.
Upon his retirement, Gary and his wife Sandy moved back to Delaware to be closer to family where he took long walks with his dog Bucky and spent time with his children and grandchildren. The legacy of Gary’s kind spirit, passion for sports, and zest for life will live on through them.
Gary was preceded in death by his parents, Herbert and Wahneta; and brother, Doug (Mary Ann). He is survived by his wife of 30 years, Sandy (née Ditchburn); children, Tara (Rich), Gary “Chip” Arlen Jr (Kim); and grandchildren, AJ, Carly, Leah, Alexa, and Logan.
Services will be held Wednesday, April 6th at 11:00 AM at the McCrery & Harra Funeral Home (3710 Kirkwood Hwy. Wilmington, DE 19808). Friends may call beginning at 10:00 AM. Burial will be private. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the American Heart and Lung Association.