On Thursday morning the 15th of November, 2018, Gregory Mark Chase passed away, at the age of 68. Greg was born on April 20, 1950 in New London, Ohio (the state of ‘Good Morning’) to Mark and Geraldyne Chase. Greg graduated from Norfolk Christian High School in 1968. He attended Columbia International University completing his BA in 1974 and then his MA in TEFL/TESL/Intercultural Studies in 1989. He married his high school sweetheart Cynthia Walker in 1972 and together they raised four children, Jennida, Lynette, Nathaniel, and Jeremiah. Greg had a life long passion for Christ, even as a toddler he was regularly known to remove his pacifier and shout “Amen” in church. In 1976, Greg and Cindy moved to Japan with their first born as missionaries working under The Evangelical Alliance Mission (TEAM).
They adventured through two terms of mission work in Japan returning in 1988, having lived and worked in Takamatsu, Karuizawa, and Hiroshima. Greg completed a Japanese language certificate in 1985 in Karuizawa, Japan. Upon returning to Virginia in 1989, Greg continued to work with international students from various Hampton Roads universities. He spent much of the 1990s and early 2000s working in the mortgage industry, but continued teaching English as a second language through the years to various communities and through several organizations. Through the years, he held strong to his motto “Be Positive” (like his blood type, as he loved to announce). Stateside he enjoyed many other aspects of the ministry including leading Sunday schools, church elder, deaconship, small group leadership, playing in praise and worship teams, and various outreach programs. As a gregarious, people person, one of the strongest legacies of his life is evidenced in the numerous relationships he fostered and relished. His warm and welcoming personality made certain he never knew a stranger that he didn’t want to talk to, help, and most importantly – lead to Christ. He lived a life of service and sacrifice.
His life’s passion was to know God and to make Him known. He was a true gourmand – a dreamer of dreams -whose tomorrow always had a brighter outlook. “If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.” He took joy in his children, stuffing their Christmas stockings with whole jars of pickles (each) and tremendous delight in his many grandchildren, exuberantly (regularly) babysitting several of them (and notoriously adding International Delight flavored creamers to the sippy cup milk)! But beyond being a sushi aficionado, with a huge sense of humor, he had a great love for fantasy, science fiction, and Navy football best of all.
Greg is preceded in death by his wife Cynthia, and his mother Geraldyne. Now reunited with Cindy, together they are making sukiyaki for Tolkien and C.S. Lewis, all the heavenly hosts, and even his mother who is no longer worried about the raw egg. Greg is survived by his father Mark and his wife Shirley; his three siblings: Julia, Cynthia and her husband Leroy, Bradley and his wife Janet; along with his four children: Jennida and her husband Hassan and their daughter Zahra, Lynette and her husband David and their children Vivienne, Cynthia and James, Nathaniel and his wife Rainey and their children Henry and Ava, and Jeremiah and his wife Cristin and their children Abigail, Emma and Elizabeth. He’s also survived by hundreds of extended family members and thousands of friends worldwide.
“I will not say, do not weep, for not all tears are an evil.” In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donating to TEAM Missions or the Union Mission. “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.” Go Navy, Beat Army!