Gary Lee Lape Sr. of Franklin, Indiana and Formerly of Manchester, Tennessee passed away peacefully on Monday April 17 at 8:13pm. He is now walking on the streets of gold, surrounded by friends and family that have gone on before. Gary was born on August 28, 1938, to Leroy and Blanche (Myers) Lape in Goshen, Indiana. Gary graduated with the class of 1957 from Jimtown High School near Elkhart, Indiana. Gary was a Tool & Die maker by trade for most of his adult life, retiring in 2002. Over the years he helped start and build several churches of the Baptist faith. He had been a volunteer firefighter for several departments in Indiana and Tennessee.
He was a 50-year member of Gideons International. Gary was an avid fan and collector of anything railroad or train related, especially steam engines. He was a conductor for many years for Old Smokey and Tennessee Valley Railroad Museums in Knoxville & Chattanooga, Tennessee, respectively. He married Donna Jordan in May of 2012, and she passed away in December 2017.
Gary is survived by his sister Echo (Darwin) Getz of Bristol, Indiana, daughter, Melanie Joy (Ron) Saffles of Fall Branch, Tennessee; sons, Gary Lee Jr (Tina) Lape of Trafalgar, Indiana, Andrew P. (Jessica) Lape of Clinton, Tennessee; one grandson and one great granddaughter of Mitchell, Indiana.
Gary is preceded in death by his parents; brother, Fred R. Lape of Middlebury, Indiana, and daughter, Janet Sue Lape of Mitchell, Indiana.
There will be no services. In respecting his wishes, he will be cremated, and his ashes placed around the Tennessee Valley Railway Museum in Chattanooga, Tennessee at a later date.