Robert Lloyd Chapman

Robert L. Chapman

MARQUETTE, MI – The family and friends of Bob Chapman had the privilege of being with him as he left us. In Corvette terms, he “launched.”

Born in Detroit MI to Lloyd Chapman and Lois DePree Chapman, the family moved to Hastings and then Kalamazoo, where he graduated from University High School. He and his sister Mare had many adventures when the family moved to the Campus of the State Technical Institute and Rehabilitation Center at Pine Lake, MI, where his father was the director. Bob met Linda and they were married while he attended MSU. He completed a BA in Psychology and an MA in Rehabilitation Counseling. He and Linda had welcomed their children Brent and Laura and his family enjoyed camping, especially trips to the UP. Bob worked 4 years as a Vocational Rehab Counselor in Jackson, 9 years as State Supervisor of Casework Operations for Michigan Rehabilitation Services in Lansing and 25 years as Manager of the UP Michigan Rehab Services District Office in Marquette. When Bob’s job brought him to Marquette, he knew that he had found “the best place to live on earth.” His job required a LOT of driving to all corners of the UP and many trips to Lansing, sometimes getting to go there on a small plane, which he thoroughly enjoyed. He loved to drive (especially fast cars), meet people, learn their stories, and eat in small town restaurants. He loved Lake Superior, Presque Isle Park and particularly watching and identifying the ore boats. Every day he took a drive to “check his town,” most recently in his beloved Corvette. In retirement, he became an incredible woodworker and produced pieces with his perfect “3 part finish.”

He was incredibly proud of his son Brent and daughter Laura as they grew to be truly “good people.” He taught them to ALWAYS have “Plan B” in life.

Bob was devoted to helping people, especially people with disabilities. While he was still working and then during retirement, he volunteered for many community organizations. Among those were Rotary, Habitat for Humanity, the American Heart Association, the UP Partnership for Safety, Presque Isle Park Advisory Committee, the Marquette Planning Commission, the UP State Credit Union Board, the Marquette Affordable Housing Task Force, Propylon, SAIL, the Climate Adaptation Taskforce and many more.

His advocacy for Universal Design, design that’s usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation, lead him to be one of the founders of the Marquette Access Group. Inspired to see the first ALL INCLUSIVE playground here in Marquette, he was part of the group that worked to plan for the construction of the new Kids Cove at Mattson Park and eventually making ALL Marquette playgrounds inclusive.

He is survived by his wife of 25 years, Barb Coleman, his sister Mare (Pam), his son Brent (Kathy), his daughter Laura, grandchildren Dessa (Tom) and Abbie, great grandchildren Delia, Declan and Grayson, nieces and nephews David (Tomo), Wendy, Henry, Evan, Josh, Addie, Jesse (Shauna), Wheatley (Max), Liz (Tony), Finn, Kitt and Rocco, and special family members Kay DePree and Jeanne Coleman.

May his strength, generosity, advocacy, and sense of humor stay with you and that you feel as we did how privileged we were to be part of his life.

A memorial Service is being planned for this summer and details will be announced.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to his beloved playground at kidscovemqt.com and learn about and spread the message of inclusivity.

Condolences may be expressed online at fassbenderswansonhansen.com.