Richard Packard Klopp, 94, of John’s Island, Vero Beach, formerly of Devon and Villanova, Penn., passed away on Jan. 17, 2016.
He is survived by his brother Frederick Klopp (Sharon), of Bonita Springs, Fla.; daughter Deborah Freas (David), of Glen Mills, Penn.; son John Klopp (Karen), of New York City, N.Y.; his grandchildren Adam, Jake and Kelly Klopp, Whitney Nelson and great-grandchildren Kevin Freas and Carter Johnson will miss him greatly.
Klopp was known as Dad, Dick or Papa by his family, friends and fans, of which he had scores. He was the consummate gentleman and family man – dapper and delightful to the end.
He was born in 1921 in Berks County, Penn., and was a graduate of Mercersburg Academy and Cornell University, Class of 1943, with a degree in Chemical Engineering and a member of Phi Gamma Delta fraternity.
In 1942 he interrupted his studies to enlist in the U.S. Army as 1st Lieutenant in Field Artillery during World War II, serving his country for three and a half years, spending one year in the Pacific. Honor and service were of utmost importance to Klopp.
In 1944 he married the love of his life, Louise Henry, after several years of ardent pursuit. Whenever he spoke of Louise, his eyes sparkled as he remembered being “smitten” from the start, convincing his friend to switch girls on a double blind date. They enjoyed a wonderful and devoted marriage for nearly 60 years, until her death in 2004.
From 1968 to 1983, Klopp was Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer of Catalytic, Inc. He retired from the company in 1986 after 34 years of service. During his years in Philadelphia, he was active with organizations near and dear to his heart as Chairman of the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, Chairman of the Junior Achievement of Delaware Valley, Chairman of the Philadelphia Area Labor-Management Committee. He also found time to serve on the Boards of the Metro YMCA, Pennsylvania State Chamber, Drexel University, Franklin Institute World Affairs Council and Cornell Medical Center.
In the 1980’s he was elected President of the Philadelphia Country Club and in 1982 received the Distinguished Pennsylvanian Award in recognition of his contribution to civic and community affairs.
After retiring, Klopp spent his time pursuing his recreational passions, golf, tennis and bridge at John’s Island Club in Vero Beach. As he approached everything in life with great enthusiasm and vigor, he was quite successful in his endeavors, and was known as “a sport.”
In 2014, at the young age of 93, he parachuted from an airplane at Skydive Sebastian. He announced this accomplishment only after its successful conclusion, to his hysterical family. He was disappointed that they did not allow him to jump out of the plane wearing the cap of his beloved Philadelphia Phillies.
An online guestbook is available at www.lowtherfunerahome.com.