Born to Leonard John Chapman and Mary Virginia Chapman in Riverside Ca. Leonard went to Anaheim High School, but graduated from the Frankfurt American High School. He always considered himself an Anaheim boy. Leonard followed his father’s footsteps and proudly served in the U.S. Air Force from 1957 to 1960 as an airplane mechanic. He was stationed at Hickam AFB in Hawaii. After leaving the Air Force, Leonard worked for the City of Anaheim from 1967 until his retirement in 1997.
He met Sharon Lee Nye in 1966 on a blind date that his sister Cara Lee arranged. The date was at a pool, and Sharon, who could not swim, stayed in the shallow end. Sharon had three children, Peggy (8), Vicki (6), and Ricky (2), when she met Leonard. Leonard fell in love with the children first and then Sharon. Leonard would bring bubble gum over for bubble blowing contests. He would drive the kids in his Red 1956 Porche convertible to Knott’s Berry Farm where Sharon worked at the Chicken Dinner Restaurant. They were married in 1967 and celebrated 52 years of marriage. Sharon proceeded Leonard in death in 2019, which broke his heart.
Sharon and Leonard had two sons together, Leonard John and Michael Owen. Both proceeded Leonard in death.
Leonard proudly worked for the City of Anaheim in the Parks and Recreation Department for 30 years. One of the family’s favorite things to do was to bring Leonard pizza on the nights he had to watch cement dry at a park. He was proud to be part of the Anaheim Hills Golf Course project, and would take the family on a Sunday drive to see the progress that was being made on the course. Those drives always ended up at Knowlwood on Imperial Hwy.
Leonard joined the Anaheim Moose Lodge and discovered his passion and love for the people that the Moose supported. Leonard worked his way up through the ranks of the Moose and eventually became what we lovingly referred to him as the “Grand Poo Bah”. It was not his official title, but it fits him the best. He proudly represented the Moose Lodges from Orange County.
Leonard’s other passion was Genealogy. He would stay in his room on the computer for thousands of hours doing research on the Chapman line. He could tell you the names and dates of his ancestors, who they married and how many children they had. He discovered that he was a relative of Johnny Appleseed, was a descendent of a Revolutionary War veteran, and relatives that came over on the Mayflower.
Leonard had three sisters, Cara Lee, Virginia “Ginny” and Gayle, all of which proceeded him in death. He leaves behind his daughters Peggy Sue Nye, Vicki (Nye) Maciha, (Greg), and his son Richard Chapman. He also leaves behind 10 grandchildren and 13 great grandchildren.
In lieu of flowers, we request that donations be made to Moose Charities 155 S International Dr. Mooseheart, IL 60539-1173. Please put Veterans in memory of Leonard Chapman.
Internment will be at the Riverside National Cemetery on July 13, 2003 at 10:30am.
Memorial will be held at Buena Park Moose Lodge August 13th 2023 at 3pm. 8651 Knott Ave, Buena Park CA 90620