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GORDON DELMAR CHAMBLISS


1919 - 2014 | Obituary Condolences
Gordon Delmar Chambliss, 94, passed away peacefully on February 23, 2014. A Wheaton resident for 50 years, he was born October 7, 1919, in the farming community of St. Joseph, IL to Walter and Minnie (Stonecipher) Chambliss. He attended St. Joseph Grade School and High School, graduated from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana with a Bachelor's Degree in Mechanical Engineering. Gordon received an Ensign's Commission in the Naval Reserve in June of 1941. He was called to active duty following college graduation in June, 1942. His first Naval assignment was to Cal Tech in Pasadena, CA. After graduating in Aeronautical Engineering, he went for further training in the Assembly and Repair Shops at the Naval Air Station in San Diego. From there, he was assigned to the Pacific Fleet and served as an Aviation Engineering Officer in Carrier Aviation Service Units 1 & 88. After his tour of duty in the Pacific Fleet, he was assigned as Inspection & Test Officer at the Assembly and Repair Shops at Glenview, IL. He was also assigned as a member of the General Court Marshal Board. Gordon claimed that Glenview was the "Country Club" of the Navy. One of his roommates was movie actor, Robert Taylor. For a time, Gordon would have breakfast every morning with Marshall Field IV, who had distinguished career as a gunnery officer in the Pacific. Following Gordon's Honorable Discharge from the Navy as a Lt. Commander, he was employed as a Research Engineer with Shell Oil Company at the Research Laboratory located at the Wood River (IL) Refinery. In 1947, he met his wife-to-be on a blind date to the Indianapolis 500 race. He married the former University of Illinois coed, Ruth Turner, of Lincoln, Illinois on June 27, 1948. They had two children, Wally and Sue. Gordon was very proud that his two children and four grandchildren all graduated from distinguished universities. Shell transferred Gordon to Chicago's Product Application Department in 1963. His department was responsible for product specifications, product quality and field testing new products. A three year span of his Chicago duties was spent in the "Honesty in Advertising" capacity for the Shell Platformate TV commercials. He retired after 33 years as a Staff Engineer. Gordon was active as a leader in Boy Scouts in Wood River, IL. He served as a Deacon at First Presbyterian Church, Alton, IL. He was a 50 year member of First Presbyterian Church, Wheaton. He served on the Wheaton Environmental Commission and was President of the Wheaton Mosquito Abatement District for several years. Gordon was an avid golfer and spent much of his retired years golfing with the weekly Seniors group. Gordon loved growing up in a farming community and was fascinated by the machinery that acted as his inspiration to pursue mechanical engineering. Farmers in those days were self-sufficient and fixed their own machinery. Gordon continued all his life to try to fix everything until computer electronics took over. He was a member of the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Society of Automotive Engineers and Military Officers Association of America. Gordon was a kind, fascinating man of great knowledge, intellectual curiosity and integrity who loved his family and friends. They will all miss him dearly. He was preceded in death by his parents, his sister, Marie Chambliss Tapscott, brother-in-law, Charles Tapscott, sister-in-law, Jane Turner Scott and brother-in-law Richard Dashner. He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Ruth, his son, Walter (Lauretta) Chambliss of Lilburn, GA, his daughter, Susan (William) Kamm of Wheaton, IL, his grandchildren John (Tiffany) Kamm of Austin, TX, Jennifer Chambliss (Finn) Smith of Alpharetta, GA, Adam (Desty) Kamm of Chicago and Julie Chambliss (Sean) Murray of Jacksonville, FL., his great-grandchildren, Austin, Kamryn and Finley Smith, Will and Katie Kamm, Griffin Murray, baby Murray due in May and baby Kamm due in June, his niece, Elizabeth Tapscott Cupps (William), brother-in-law Charles Scott and sister-in-law Alice Turner Dashner. He was blessed with many wonderful nieces, nephews, extended family and friends, along with his loving caregivers Donna, Harriet and Helen. Visitation from 1 pm until time of Service at 3 pm on Saturday, March 1 at First Presbyterian Church, 715 N. Carlton, Wheaton. Interment will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations to First Presbyterian Church, www.firstpreswheaton.org or DuPage Children's Museum, www.dupagechildrensmuseum.org would honor him. Friends and family may sign a guest book at hultgrenfh.com. For more information, please call Hultgren Funeral Home at 630-668-0027.
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Published in Chicago Suburban Daily Herald on Feb. 26, 2014
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