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Thursday, May 05, 2022

Ohio's Chad Simpson Passes Away


by Christopher Hodapp

NOTE: This story has been updated 5/6/2022 5:00PM:

It was a shock for me today to spot a Facebook post from Arts and Sciences Lodge 792 in Ohio reporting the death of Brother Chad Edward Simpson on Monday, May 2nd. He was just 49 years old.

I've known Chad almost since the day I became a Master Mason, and if memory serves, we joined the fraternity in the same year. In the early 2000s a group of us connected regularly via Masonic email groups and online forums, long before the arrival of Facetwit and Twitbook. In those days, a new crop of Masons were decrying the dearth of Masonic education being conducted at the lodge level. Ohio was one of the first handful of grand lodges that had an internet presence with a public website (and the highly coveted freemason.com domain name), and Chad jumped into promoting Masonry and Masonic education online. He was soon to become the Director of Development for the GL of Ohio, a position he held for two decades. Chad also became a cheerleader for the Midwest Conference on Masonic Education.

While there's no official funeral home obituary available yet, Brother "bmkecck" on Reddit this week posted the following message that lists just a few of Chad's numerous Masonic accomplishments and associations: 


Chad was Director of Program Development for the Grand Lodge of Ohio for almost 20 years, so was instrumental in implementing a number of things that are now standard in the jurisdiction: Candidate Counseling materials, the Master Craftsman Program, Officer's Manual; the written Code, Officer's Manual and Ancient Charges exams; PR funds-matching program, Lodge Education Officer's Manual, multiple education programs. He was editor of the Ohio Beacon Masonic newsletter, highly involved in the Midwest Conference on Masonic Education; one of the charter members of Arts and Sciences Lodge #792, Ohio's first 'TO Lodge (although they'll tell you that they aren't TO'; one of the founders of the Masonic Restoration Foundation and the Masonic Education Traveling Roadshow, among many, many other things in Ohio.
 
He was a Past Master of York Lodge #563, was given the honorary title of Immediate Past Master of Arts and Sciences #792 by unanimous resolution when the Lodge received it's charter; a past District Education Officer of the 14th Masonic District, was a Knight of the York Cross of Honor and received his 33rd degree from the Valley of Columbus in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Along with Chad Kopenski, they formed the often joked about 'Ohio Chads' to create programs, materials, and events in Masonic education. The 'Ohio Chads' were working together on next year's Midwest Conference on Masonic Education upon Brother Simpson's death.

He loved Freemasonry, was an avid concertina player and knitting enthusiast, was a fierce friend who saw the best in others and worked to help them see themselves the way that he saw them.

He is of that generation 'ago' so that many Masons here didn't know him or know of him; but, believe me, he was the kind of person that you'd appreciate having as a Brother and love having as a friend.

Chad Simpson was of those incredible people who touched countless lives and influenced so many others, often without realizing it himself. His death was quite sudden and unexpected. Please keep his wife Bridget and their family in your thoughts and prayers.

His column is broken, and his Brethren mourn. 

Requiescat in pace.


UPDATE: Chad's official obituary was just posted on the funeral home's website HERE. It is reprinted below:


Chad Simpson, 49, of Columbus, passed away on May 2, 2022. He was born on February 2, 1973 to the late Robert Simpson and Shirley Osborne. In addition to his parents, Chad was preceded by his grandparents, Elmer and Betty Krebs; and his cats, Adah and Esther.

Chad was an active Freemason in Ohio, and worked at the Grand Lodge for nearly 18 years. Chad was a powerful influence and leader of Freemasonry, and a friend and mentor who left his imprint on thousands of lives. He was a perfectionist, and never shy with his opinion, yet his guidance was always given with love and humor.

In recent years, Chad was a part of the team at the Wesley Communities. He made a difference through his thoughtful approach to fundraising on behalf of the Communities, and changed lives by building a family amongst residents and staff alike, always willing to give a listening ear and a helping hand.

Chad recently took up hobbies including playing concertina and knitting, to the delight of family and friends. He had a lifelong love of cooking, a skill he first learned from his grandmother. Chad had a number of interests and hobbies that he shared freely with others, one of the wonderful things that made him such a unique and delightful person. And he had a special place in his heart for his kitty cats, whom he loved dearly.

Chad will be greatly missed by his loving wife of 18 ½ years, Bridget Simpson; brothers, Jerry (Katie) Grafe, Cory (Kate) Simpson, Casey Simpson, and Dan (Cindy) Simpson; nieces and nephews, Jenna and Madison Grafe, Megan (Wesley) Doyle, and Tyler, Chloe, and Addie Simpson, Josette, Joseph, Jacob, and Samantha Simpson, and Clare and Penelope Simpson; great nieces and nephews, Madeline Doyle, Grayson Sanborn, and Sophia Adame; father and mother in-law Louis and Margaret Sass; brother in-law Matthew (Samantha) Sass; and two cats, Ruthie and Lydia.

A Masonic Service will be held on Monday, May 16, 2022 at 5PM and a visitation will follow and go until 8PM at the Schoedinger Worthington funeral home, 6699 North High Street, Worthington OH, 43085. A visitation will be on Tuesday, May 17, 2022, from 11AM until 12PM at Wesley Glen Retirement Community, 5155 North High Street, Columbus OH, 43214. A Funeral Service will follow at 12PM. All are welcome at both services.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Chad Simpson Memorial Scholarship Fund (established in Chad’s name to support young scholars in our community – he received a Masonic scholarship as a youth, his first introduction to the kindness and brotherhood of Freemasonry) and the Wesley Glen Retirement Community Employee Emergency Fund (a fund Chad created at Wesley Glen that was especially important to him – to give, select the “Wesley Glen Other” designation and type “Employee Emergency Fund” in the comments).


4 comments:

  1. Will always cherish the congratulatory call Chad made when we formed Sophia Lodge in North Carolina... Godspeed my brother!

    ReplyDelete
  2. He was a true brother and friend. He was smart, compassionate, a bridge builder, awesome conversationalist and a brother's brother. Heaven has certainly gained an angel. I will be praying for Sis. Simpson and his family. May he RIH!

    ReplyDelete
  3. « Gémissons, Gémissons mais Espérons ».
    « Espérons, Espérons en confiance, Espérons en confiance et en sérénité ! »
    Puisse Dieu, l'Être Éternel, le Très Haut, Grand Architecte de l'Univers, accueillir ce digne Fils de la Lumière en Sa demeure céleste où, désormais, il résidera en paix.

    ReplyDelete
  4. A heartbreaking loss. My BEST friend in all things masonic. And although we did not see eye-to-eye on everything, even when it came to AS792, our differences were always small and unremarkable. Chad was the seed for Arts & Sciences. Without him the lodge would never have come into being. With him, we are a force for positive improvement, and we recognized that in making him our first Immediate Past Master, a motion which our entire membership, including the outgoing WM under dispensation, whole-heartedly supported. May his memory be for a blessing.

    ReplyDelete

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