Glenn Robert Chafee
May 5, 1927 – December 3, 2018
Glenn Robert Chafee, Jr
Glenn went home to his Savior on December 3, 2018. He was born in Grand Junction, CO on May 5, 1927. Within 6 months, the family relocated to Victor, CO where he grew up until entering the Army in 1945. Victor was a small gold mining town that was hit hard by the Great Depression and Glenn grew up knowing the value of working hard to make ends meet.
After honorable discharge from the Army, he attended University of Colorado studying Engineering. He met his future wife, Gwen Garland, at a square-dancing club and they were married in 1949. They were married for 65 years until Gwen passed in September 2014.
When Glenn graduated with a BS in Mechanical Engineering (1950), he was accepted into GE training program which had them transferring frequently to different assignments to expose Glenn to many different engineering opportunities. In 1 1/2 years they lived in Cincinnati, OH, Burlington, VT, Pittsfield, MA and finally Schenectady, NY where Dad enrolled in GE’s Creative Engineering Program.
While in Pittsfield, Debora Lynn Chafee was born.
After graduating from the Creative Engineering Program, the family moved to Morrison, IL where Gary Scott Chafee was born. Here they built their first house and Glenn did a great deal of the work himself. Glenn was a creator and inventor throughout his career with 11 patents to his name.
In 1960, Glenn started a new job at GE Appliance Park in Louisville, KY. Glenn & Gwen started square dancing again, joined a church and many clubs and raised a family. Both were active in Boy & Girl Scouts, little league, golf, swimming and bridge.
In 1976, after both children had graduated College, Glenn left GE and became VP of Research & Development at Rolscreen (Pella windows). Gwen and Glenn moved again to Pella, IA. While in IA, Dad finally obtained his airplane pilots license which had been a dream for many years. He & Gwen flew all over the Eastern US visiting friends and family. His job also took them to Europe frequently and they would combine trips and vacation. Glenn also became passionate about tennis and reached the finals in his age bracket in the Iowa Olympics.
In 1990, Glenn retired from Rolscreen. They moved to a garden home in Palm Beach Gardens, FL to enjoy the “country club” life. Glenn played golf, tennis, bridge, was active at church, and puttered around the house working on projects. Both Gwen and Glenn became USTA umpires and enjoyed working many different tennis tournaments in FL and later in CO.
During their years in Florida, Dad volunteered with International Executive Services Company who arranges for retired executives to assist foreign companies with business development through 3 to 4 month assignments. Gwen & Glenn had five different assignments taking them to Guatemala, Venezuela, Slovakia, and two assignments to Ukraine. These trips were memorable and Glenn was able to help each company with some aspect of their business.
In 1997, Glenn & Gwen moved back to their “roots” in Colorado and to be with Gwen’s mom. Glenn had to give up tennis due to shoulder injuries but continued to umpire collegiate tennis tournaments and became a golf official for the USGA. While both Gwen & Glenn were native Coloradoans, this is the first
time they had lived in CO since leaving in 1950. They thoroughly enjoyed being “home” and ability to join large family gatherings.
When Gwen’s mom passed, they decided to move back to warmth of Florida and did so in 2009. They reunited with old friends and the church. With Gwen’s increasing difficulty in getting around, they chose to move to the Waterford in 2012 for the friends, activities, easy accessibility and life care. Glenn suffered a severe hip injury shortly after the move which led to many years of limping and giving up golf. They were still active in church, bridge and lots of Waterford activities.
Gwen passed away in 2014, leaving her best friend (Frankie) and Glenn both devastated. Together they recovered from their grief and became a loving couple. Glenn continued to reside at the Waterford.
On October 26th, Glenn suffered a mild stroke. He wanted to recover and return to his apartment and was in rehab when his health turned worse. He passed on December 3, 2018.
Glenn was a soft-spoken man of few words, but they were always worth listening to. Glenn was honest, intelligent, caring, a devoted family man, always willing to help anyone, humble and kind to everyone. He exemplified the faith that he held so strongly. Welcome to Heaven, Glenn!
Service will be at Oceanview Methodist Church on Monday, December 17th at 10 am.
Oceanview Church A United Methodist Congregation 701 Ocean Dr. Juno Beach, FL 33408
In lieu of flowers, please send donations to The Good Samaritan Fund or Family Promise at Oceanview.
IN THE CARE OF