Robert (Bob) Willis Chapman

January 6, 2020

Charlotte – Robert Willis Chapman (Bob) died after a brief illness on the night of January 6, 2020 in his home at The Cypress. A service to celebrate his life will be held on Friday, January 10 at 2:00 PM in the Community Room at The Cypress, 3442 Cypress Club Dr., Charlotte, NC 28210. The family will greet friends there following the service. 

Bob was born on January 28,1928 in Charlotte, NC, the younger of two sons of the late John and Latta W. Chapman. He and his brother, Brick, grew up in Charlotte and attended the Charlotte school system from elementary through high school. He was an outstanding athlete, competing regionally in tennis and track, as well as giving tennis lessons. Additionally, he was quarterback of the football team at Central High.  After his junior year in high school, Bob went to Duke University where his athletic success continued as Captain of the tennis team. At Duke, he was a member of the Kappa Alpha fraternity. 

Following graduation he married Cordy in September 1950 and began their sixty-nine years of marriage.  Soon after their marriage, Bob entered the Navy and was stationed in the Mediterranean during The Korean War. 

After the Navy, Bob worked for Reliance Electric and A.O. Smith in Ohio.  In 1959, he moved to Charlotte to start his own electrical manufacturer’s representative business, R W Chapman & Company. He was President of EERA in 1974-75.  In 1968, Bob started a conduit pipe manufacturing plant, Queen City Plastics, and remained active until his late eighties.  These companies remain in business today and are a testament to his resourcefulness and work ethic. He also was involved with many other ventures in the course of his career. 

Bob was a humble gentleman who charmed people with his kindness and generosity. He played many years of golf with his wife and friends, particularly the BTL (Born To Lose). Many of his golf opponents were disarmed by his quiet competitiveness.  Aside from golf, he loved feeding and watching bird, especially hummingbirds.  He also had an adoration for orchids and was able to effortlessly keep many alive in his home. 

Bob was a member of Myers Park Presbyterian Church, Wee Kirk Presbyterian Church, Charlotte Country Club, Quail Hollow Country Club, Country Club of North Carolina, Linville Country Club, The Charlotte City Club, The Benedicts, and The Bulls Investment Club. 

He is predeceased by his parents, his brother, Brick, and his wife, Cordy. Bob is survived by his son, Todd, and his wife, Stacey of Big Sky, Montana,  his daughter, Gay and her husband, Joel, and his daughter, Holly, and her husband, Evan; six grandchildren, Dr. Todd M. Chapman, Jr., Will W. Chapman, Chris B. Chapman,  Cordylia  Brook Vann, Robert C. Vann, and W. Walker Vann; and six great-grandchildren. 

The family is grateful for the love and care of Bob by a dedicated team of caregivers.

In lieu of flowers, perform a random act of kindness with Bob in mind. 

Arrangements are in the care of Kenneth W. Poe Funeral & Cremation Service, 1321 Berkeley Ave., Charlotte, NC 28204; (704) 641-7606. Online condolences can be shared at



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  • J. Delane Suggs

    I had the privilege of working for Bob Chapman for 21 years at the Robert W. Chapman Company. He was a very generous and caring individual. He will be missed.

  • Bob and Emogene Kelly

    Our prayers and thoughts are with the family of Bob Chapman. He was a dear friend and boss. He will be missed in so many ways. His memories will live on. May he rest in peace.
    Bob and Emogene Kelly