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Steve J

Ray Chapman

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Ray Chapman, one of the fathers of modern pistolcraft passed away Saturday, February 2, 2008. A Patron member of the National Rifle Association, Mr. Chapman served as a Marine during WWII seeing action in the Pacific theater island campaigns and again during the early stages of the Korean Conflict. After being honorably discharged from the Marine Corps, he worked as a fireman in Oregon while completing his education. Upon receiving a degree in Civil Engineering, Ray moved to California and began a career with State of California Highway Department, and also worked part time as a police officer. It was while he was in California that he became acquainted with the Southwest Pistol League, and began to hone the shooting skills that would culminate in his winning the First World Combat Pistol Championship in 1975 in Zurich. With the help and urging of his friends, he opened the world-renowned Chapman Academy of Practical Shooting in Columbia Missouri. This training facility became the home of the Bianchi Cup - the most prestigious pistol competition in the world - and is still in operation today. Mr. Chapman retired from the Academy in 1995 and moved to Dripping Springs, just west of Austin. Here he enjoyed visiting with his friends, working in the motion picture industry, and relaxing at his home. All who know him will miss his loyal friendship, his honest, bluff way of expression, his sense of humor and his bright smiling blue eyes. He was a true gentleman, and the best friend a person could hope for. Memorial service will be held at 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, February 6, 2008 at Harrell Funeral Chapel, Dripping Springs, TX. Memorial contributions may be made to Second Amendment Foundation.

Edited to add: You can sign an on-line guest book HERE.

Edited by Steve J

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Ray Chapman was a real piece of work, and will not be forgotten.

He was known for having control of his ranges. In fact I think there were some invitees of Bianchi, who were asked to not come back due to personality or other clashes with Ray. There was some comment about Will Rogers having never met a man he didn't like, and the fact that Will Rogers never met Ray Chapman! :surprise:

The Legacy of Ray Chapman will be his contribution to the shooting sports as a shooter, an instructor, a range owner/operator and as co-father of the Bianchi Cup International Pistol Tournament.

To you Ray :cheers:

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A great loss. One of the founding fathers of IPSC. He was a real gentleman to me whenever I saw him and spoke to him, and while he had a temper I never saw him use it to abuse or humiliate others.

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Ray introduced me to the sport of IPSC just over 30 yrs ago when I

was a Medical student. He was a great guy. Ray was one of the people

who made this sport what it is today. I am proud to have known him,

he will be missed. My thoughts are with his family.

DOC

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The attached is an old photo of Ray Chapman, Elden Carl, Thell Reed, Jeff Cooper and Jack Weaver.

Jeff Cooper said of the modern technique of the pistol:

"...The original lifesaving technique was invented by Jack Weaver, perfected by Elden Carl and Ray Chapman, codified by John Plahn, and promulgated by me."

edit to add quotation mark

post-3253-1202319594.jpg

Edited by CenTX

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I was priviledged to take a class from him with a dozen or so others about six years ago at the range next to the house he shared (out his front door). He was an excellent teacher, and when it rained too hard to shoot we adjourned to the house to sit around and talk and check out the contents of his gun safe - there were stories connected to just about all of the guns. It was a great experience! I remember him picking up the angle-iron constructed Bianchi barricades by himself and moving them on and off the range - even in his 70s, he was a hoss. He about wore all of us young'uns out.

May he rest in peace.

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I also had the pleasure of attending a seminar in Grand Rapids Michigan several years ago where Ray and

Massad Ayoob taught. The world and the shooting sports have lost a true gentleman.

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I just got back from Rays Memorial service it was very nice. Ray was a great guy and he will be sorely missed.

They had some great pics of Ray up at the memorial. Including some of Ray and Jeff Cooper.

RIP Ray :(

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Years ago I had privilege of taking Lethal Force class. My two instructors for the week were Chapman and Ayoob. It was GREAT, they treated the eleven of us in class like family. Went to diner with us all, drank some beers and told some great stories. I was just starting to build 1911's then and Chapman let me take his 45 apart and take some detailed photo's.

Also thank CenTx for that photo. I tried to get American handgunner to sell me a copy and they wouldn't.

I will print and frame that one.

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Years ago I had privilege of taking Lethal Force class. My two instructors for the week were Chapman and Ayoob. It was GREAT, they treated the eleven of us in class like family. Went to diner with us all, drank some beers and told some great stories. I was just starting to build 1911's then and Chapman let me take his 45 apart and take some detailed photo's.

Also thank CenTx for that photo. I tried to get American handgunner to sell me a copy and they wouldn't.

I will print and frame that one.

If you are going to print and frame, I have a hi-res file (8 MB). PM your email address, if you can receive files that big, and I will email it to you.

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In 1968 I was privileged with the opportunity to make the acquaintance of this fine gentleman and outstanding "Combat " shooter (as it was referred to in those days and times) when he and Gene Shuey came to Hartford, Connecticut to assist our group with the starting of the Northeast Combat Pistol League. Meeting Ray Chapman was an experience I have never forgotten and never shall.

Ray and Jeff are now at a much more open range. RIP to both DVC

Pete

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This is sad news for me, I had the privelege of working for Ray at the Chapman Academy. He didn't suffer fools gladly but was a true gentleman and professional. I learned a lot from him.

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