Marvin Charles Creamer

January 24, 1916August 12, 2020

Marvin C. Creamer passed away on August 12, 2020, following a mercifully brief illness that required hospitalization in Raleigh, North Carolina, where he had been living. He was 104 years old. He lived most of his life in southern New Jersey and coastal North Carolina.

Marvin was born in 1916 on his parents’ farm in Pittsgrove Township, Salem County, New Jersey. He was married to Blanche Layton Creamer in 1946 (deceased 2005) and is survived by his sister Evelyn Creamer Daniels; children Andra Creamer Hohler James (David), Lynn Creamer Borstelmann (Tim), and Kurt Creamer (Melissa); grandchildren and step-grandchildren Peggy James, Star Schreier Nixon (Matt), Evan Schreier, Vaughn Creamer, John Borstelmann, Kathryn Jeffery, Maggie Creamer, and Daniel Borstelmann; great-grandchildren Charlotte Nixon and Logan Nixon. He is survived also by his wife of 10 years, Elaine Gillam Creamer.

Marvin was best known for his extraordinary achievement of sailing around the world on the 36-foot sailing vessel, Globestar, without the utilization of a compass, watch, sextant or any navigational instruments. He completed the voyage in May 1984 when he was 68 years old.

Marvin had a long association with Rowan University (formerly known as Glassboro State College) where he graduated with an undergraduate degree in education in 1943, established the Geography Department as its first chair 50 years ago, received honors as alumnus and professor emeritus after teaching there from 1948 until retirement in 1977, and was awarded an honorary doctorate degree in the humanities in 1980. He also had graduate degrees in education and geography from the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Wisconsin. Marvin traveled extensively throughout his lifetime by land or sea, and was loved by many across the world for his extensive knowledge, his remarkable memory, his innate intelligence and decency, and his unsurpassed wit!

Memorial donations may be directed per the family’s request to the Marvin Creamer Scholarship Fund, Rowan University, 201 Mullica Hill Rd., Glassboro, NJ, 08028. To make a donation online designate the Marvin Creamer Scholarship Fund at Rowan University: ( More information about the Marvin Creamer Scholarship fund can be found at: Marvin Creamer Scholarship Fund ( Marvin Creamer Scholarship.html).


Marvin Charles Creamer

have a memory or condolence to add?

David Kent

October 29, 2020

I never knew Mr. Creamer, but I assigned his obituary from The Economist to my 10th grade Global History class in early September. His feats grabbed hold of the imaginations of this class of almost thirty 14 and 15-year old boys (it's an all boys school) who still talk about him weeks later as the epitome of all things cool. He brings smiles to their faces and joy to our lives.

Peg Dawson

August 23, 2020

Mr. Cramer taught my class the social studies of Canada in 1963 or 1964. His class was the hi-light of my day. He was an interesting and warm human being. I think of him every so often, especially when I visit Lac Mengantic, Quebec, Canada. I'm very glad Mr. Cramer had a rewarding life.

robert baum

August 20, 2020

Dear Andra, Lynn, and Kurt,
What an exciting, adventurous, and fulfilling life. I included a drawing I did of your father when he returned in 1984 that we used for the invitation.
Bob Baum

Gayle Anderson (nee Bickford)

August 18, 2020

To the family of Mr. Creamer, it is with deep sadness that I learned of Mr. Creamer's passing this morning. Though I was connected with him on Facebook these last years, I was not keeping on top of it recently. However, today, I was sorting through emails, and found today's daily email from The New York Times. I don't read it daily, but something compelled me to read it today. And, to my shock, there was a story about some of Mr. Creamer's accomplishments and contributions to our world during his lifetime. I went through my lifetime with him being a solid figure in my life, the parent of a dear classmate, and friend. It was really great to communicate with him on Facebook, and where he continued to amaze me at 104 years old! May all who knew and loved him find peace and comfort in the fact he lived life well, and amazingly. Sincerely, Gayle, former student of the Glassboro State College (Rowan University) Bozarth Campus Elementary School class of 1966, Glassboro High School class of 1970, and Glassboro State College (Rowan University)

john doe

August 18, 2020

Enjoyed his lectures as a student at GLASSBORO STATE COLLEGE!!!Well admired him. Remember him well. Class of 1979

Charles and Lynn Layton

August 17, 2020

Marvin and I were as brothers, not in-laws. We shared a lifetime of working and having fun being together.
Marvin and Blanche provided the whole family with years of happy Thanksgiving Day memories.
So with hearts full of love mixed with sadness we join family and friends honoring a special man. His life was well lived effecting in a positive manner everyone he met.
We loved and admired him.
We love you, his family, very especially and share this loss with sadness and loving thoughts and prayers.
........And last evening at dinner we had Dr. Martin’s lima beans from the abundance of a Maryland farm- - -yet they are never the equal of Marv’s from the Jersey soil.

Tracy Marcotte

August 17, 2020

I'm so sorry to hear of passing of your father. What a great man. I watched the videos of his sailing memories a couple of times. He had a very blessed life, and you must be so proud. You and your family are in my prayers.
Tracy Marcotte

Jacquelyn and John Cheshire

August 15, 2020

We were so sorry to hear of Marvins passing. Condolences to the family! We had the pleasure of meeting Marvin and Elaine when we were vacationing at our son and daughter in laws home in Pine Knoll Shores. Our son Rob had told us of his remarkable friend and wanted us to meet him. Marvin invited us to visit at their home and we enjoyed chatting over a cup of tea. We have kept up with his whereabouts through our son,Rob and were avid fans of his Facebook poems. He will be missed!! When we return for a visit to Pine Knoll Shores and go out sailing with Rob and Lou Anne he will always be in our hearts.

Carol Carver

August 15, 2020

Those visits my Uncle Marvin and Aunt Blanche made to Florida were some of my fondest memories. I remember visits with him when I was as young as six and lucky enough to travel a few times to NJ in recent years. But the memory that stands out to me is when he spoke about his Globe Star Voyage to my history class when I was in 8th grade. My teacher didn’t believe that he was my uncle. Quite a moment when he arrived and gave that speech off the cuff. I appreciate it even more now as I teach and being able to walk in to a bunch of 13 year olds with no preparation or photos or props, I can’t imagine. But that day he was my great uncle who was truly a ‘great uncle’! I will miss seeing you on Facebook.

Lew Rentel

August 15, 2020

I was Marvin's next door neighbor in Pine Knoll Shores and as far as I know we had a great relationship. Marvin was a great, smart and physically and mentally active and was in his late 80s or 90's duding our relationship. He had a large garden he did every year, cut grass and even saw him on a rope about 40 or 50 feet off the ground trimming a tree. HIs wife had pulled him up with the rope tied to a small tractor. He cut his grass, sailed his boat and did all kinds of things that I thought was amazing for a man in his late 90's. I visited with him regularly when I was at our beach home and when we lived there.
Here is Marvin on a typical day in his late 90's. Great person. WHAT MORE CAN I SAY!
He was a great man with a great wives and family