Their Memory Lives

Leo Chapman, the father of Mark Chapman, contributor to the Chapman Center, passed away peacefully on April 10th in Clay Center, Kansas.

Irene and Leo Chapman

Irene and Leo Chapman

Leo was born June 4, 1919 to Chris and O’Tillie (Dietrich) Chapman. He attended Hannibal Grade School and graduated from Clay Center High School. He attended Kansas State University for 2 years where he earned a letter in wrestling.

He married Irene Elizabeth McCully on October 19, 1940. They were married for 72 years.

Leo was an entrepreneur. He was a farmer, cattleman, developer, general contractor, real estate and stock broker, appraiser of farmland and property, antique dealer, and held many auctions.

While in his 70’s and 80’s, he competed in Senior Olympics, even taking 3rd place in the shot put at the National Senior Olympic Meet.

Leo was a member of the United Methodist Church and served as a member of the Trustees Committee. He was one of the originators of the Good Friday Men’s Breakfast. He served on the boards of: Broughton School District, Broughton Telephone, Broughton Watershed, Clay Center Coop, and Clay Center Utilities Committee. He was a member of the Lion’s Club and the Chamber of Commerce.

His hobbies were many. Refurbishing old upright pianos and pump organs, collecting & selling R S Prussia china, Vaseline glass and quilts. He also was a craftsman of fine wood furniture, giving many pieces to his children and grandchildren.

He went big game hunting in Colorado for years and was an avid hand fisherman.

He is preceded in death by his wife, Irene, son, Mark Allan, and baby daughter, Rena Lee.

Survivors include daughter-in-law Cheryl Mellenthin, Cat Spring, TX, son, Christopher (Edee Medley) Chapman of Richland, WA, daughter Julie (Dennis) Rice of Winfield, KS. Sister, Beulah (Chapman) Avery, Raytown, MO.

Grandchildren Amy (Frank) Burns, Lexi (Todd) Giblin, Carter Chapman, Jesse (Jeri) Chapman, and Carl (Louise) Chapman. And 5 great grandchildren.


Meet Chapman Center Interns at K-State Open House


Have you wondered what Chapman Center interns really do?

Got a lead on a Lost Town you’d like to share?

Curious about what K-State has to offer you?

Now’s your chance to meet our fantastic four interns and learn more about all things PURPLE at K-State’s Open House this Saturday, April 11, 8:45 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.!

You’ll find the Chapman Center for Rural Studies booth in the Student Union and on the same floor as the BookStore. Ask about current research, view the Chapman Center highlight reel, and look through some of the Chapman Center publications.

Don’t miss it!

Check out the Open House promo video. Get inspired.