Mildred Chapman


ROSSVILLE Mildred Christian Chapman, 96, went to her heavenly home on April 5, 2012 while the Golden Bells of Heaven rang in welcome for this member of a pioneer north Ga. family.Mildred Christian Chapman was born on Oct. 14, 1915 when horses and buggies were the principle mode of transportation, farming was the primary occupation, Woodrow Wilson was President, and, if you were lucky enough to have a car, gasoline was 20 cents a gallon. Mildred was the daughter of the late Thomas Watson Christian, Sr. and Gladys Thorne Christian and the sister of Audrey Christian Brown and the late Thomas Watson Christian, Jr. She was the wife of the late James Ernest Chapman, a local businessman and one of the founders of the Capital Bank in Fort Oglethorpe. She always said her "greatest honor in life was being his wife." Mildred was raised on a farm on Dietz Road in Catoosa County; and every morning before going to high school, she milked cows. Her grandfather, John Wesley Christian, was her first teacher when she entered "grammar" school. She graduated from Ringgold High School in 1932, attended Young Harris College for a year, and began her teaching career at age 18. She would eventually go on to earn her Bachelor's degree from Florida State University in Tallahassee and her Masters from the University of Chattanooga (now UTC), graduating Cum Laude. Her career in education spanned more than 42 years as a teacher and administrator. She taught at Westside, Lakeview, South Rossville, and East Brainerd Elementary Schools. In 1959 she was appointed to the Reading Center at the University of Chattanooga. She was one of the founders of the Tennessee Reading Association, and the local chapter was named in her honor, the "Mildred Chapman Chattanooga Area Council of the International Reading Association." She went on to hold various administrative positions, i.e., Director of Elementary Guidance and Chief School Psychologist, Supervisor of Instruction, Director of Elementary Education, and Director of Support Services. She conducted reading workshops for teachers in Florida, Oklahoma, Alabama, Tennessee and Georgia. She was a member of Delta Kappa Gamma (DKG) and, in 2003, received the "Honor of the Rose" for her many years of dedicated service to education. She was a member of Lakeview First Baptist Church where she taught Sunday school for over 50 years and was a member and teacher of the TEL class. In retirement she did taxes for senior citizens, loved to shop, attended professional meetings, decorated her home, maintained her yard, prepared her Sunday school lessons, and visited with her grandchildren in Florida. She often joked by saying, "Can you imagine I was President of the Beverly Hills Garden Club but could not grow anything." Friends often remarked she was always dressed up, "even wearing hat and gloves to the mailbox or to take out the garbage." Her fourth grade class of 1946 sent flowers to her 90th birthday party. Hulett Siniard never failed to send her roses on her birthday. Kathy Liner donated every Monday to be her friend and companion, and Linda Mikel was her beloved hairdresser. She wanted to thank Bess, Katie, Brenda, and Doris for their care and concern as well as Glinda and Margrett for their care in her final days. She also wanted to thank her many friends in DKG and her church family for their support and concern in her last years of life. She is survived by her son James Richard (Pat) Chapman; sister, Audrey (Lloyd) Christian Brown; Barbara Chapman Wood (mother of her grandchildren); two grandchildren, Angela Chapman and Michael R. Chapman; four great-grandchildren (James H, Brenna, Joshua, and Michaela), niece Christie (Gary) Brown Cundiff; and several nieces and nephews. Funeral services will be 1 p.m., Monday, in the funeral home chapel with Dr. David Harr, Rev. Max Parrish, Dr. Leroy Spinks, and Rev. Patrick Cooper.Interment will be in Lakewood Memory Gardens, South.Visit to view the memorial tribute and share condolences with the family.The family will receive friends, today, noon to 3 p.m. and 6-8 p.m, and Monday, 11-1 p.m., at Heritage Funeral Home and Crematory, Battlefield Parkway.

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