On Monday, August 10, 2020, Melvin Chenoweth, loving husband, wonderful dad, and awesome grandpa, passed away at the age of 81.
Born to Emmett and Lucinda (Durnil) Chenoweth on May 19, 1939, Melvin was raised in Indianapolis, and married Jill Davis, his high school sweetheart on her birthday, October 17, 1959. She survives.
Melvin graduated from Emmerich Manual High School and Harry E. Wood Barber School. He joined his dad, Emmett, as a barber at Chenoweth’s Barber Shop, where he gave flat-tops, told stories, and learned jokes that he couldn’t repeat at home. During the economic downturn of the early 1970’s, which he blamed on the long hair of the Beatles, Melvin changed careers, becoming a trained optician at E.H. Schmidt Optical, and later at Walmart Optical Labs. He never met a pair of glasses that he couldn’t repair.
Together with Jill, Melvin raised two daughters, Delisa and Pam, in whom he instilled his love of nature as well as his penny-pinching tendencies. Throughout his life Melvin was very involved in his family’s activities. He served as Commissioner for Greenwood Lassie League, where he also umpired hundreds of girls’ softball games. Affectionately “Wooly-Worm” to the Girl Scouts in Troop 1114, Melvin was the official Wagon Master for their summer camping trips. He never missed a girls’ basketball game, a Greenwood band concert, and he cheered at every marching band contest. And just as importantly, he was quite accomplished at puttering in the garage and garden.
He excelled as the world’s best Grandpa to Amy and Tyler, playing Barbies and Matchbox cars, and dispensing advice and unconditional love.
Melvin and Jill had a passion for travelling North America in their RV, visiting nearly every state, spending time with the families of their much-loved nieces and nephews, and sampling biscuits and gravy at every local café along the way. Winters were spent RVing across the South, and summers throughout the USA and Canada. His last short trip was a perfectly executed 60th anniversary surprise for Jill to the West Baden Springs Resort.
Melvin is survived by his wife, Jill, of Greenwood; daughters, Delisa (Steve) White, of Milwaukee, WI, Pam (Mike) Evans, of Fishers; granddaughter, Amy (Mario Diaz) Narr, of Milwaukee WI; grandson, Tyler Narr, of West Bend, WI; sister, Sharon Greene, of Indianapolis; as well as uncles, an aunt, cousins, and many nieces and nephews.
A celebration of Melvin’s life will be held at a future date.
Memorials may be sent to:
Johnson County Senior Services
731 S State Street, Franklin, IN 46131
Greenwood Lassie League
PO Box 624
Greenwood, Indiana 46142
Girl Scouts of Central Indiana
7201 Girl Scout Lane
Indianapolis, IN 46214
1275 First Street NE
Washington, DC 20526
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