Christian Gaupp III, a name kept familiar by the roadway named for him that runs between the White Horse Pike and Jimmie Leeds Road in western Galloway Township, died Monday at age 102 - about two weeks before his 103rd birthday.
The roadway, Chris Gaupp Drive, was named after the former public works head for his more than 38 years of service to the township and Atlantic County.
"During the winter months as a teenager, he helped the (township) community build gravel roads using the family horse and wagon to haul the gravel from the gravel pit to the road," said his grandson Eric Gaupp.
After a brief period with the county's Agriculture Conservation Program, Christian Gaupp began his work at the township's Public Works Department. He played an active role in addressing issues in the city's roadways and drainage system, Eric Gaupp said.
"Chris spent many hours (on his own time after work hours) each week patrolling the township roads looking for potential problems, such as potholes, drainage issues, downed tree limbs, intersection hazards, safety issues and many other conditions," Eric Gaupp said.
When he retired in 1978, the Township Council honored him by passing an ordinance to rename what was then Kumys Avenue as Chris Gaupp Drive, which has become the main artery from the White Horse Pike to AtlantiCare Regional Medical Regional, Mainland Campus, Eric Gaupp said.
Christian Gaupp was born in the Germania section of the township and worked for the county as well as the township. He was president of and the last charter member of the Germania Gun Club, which reflected his love for hunting and trapping. He used to trap muskrats during the winter on 100 acres of meadow property he owned along the Mullica River, Eric Gaupp said. He liked hunting rabbits, ducks, deer and foxes.
Gaupp also loved to fish, travel and enjoyed woodworking.
He stayed active for his 35 years after retirement, Eric Gaupp said. "For some perspective of Chris' lifetime: He was born in the time of horse and wagon, no electricity, indoor plumbing or telephone; lived through the Great Depression, the first automobile, many wars, starting with WWI, a nuclear bomb, and terrorism; the industrialization of our country, the invention of television, airplanes, putting a man on the moon, computers, Internet and 18 presidents from William Taft to Barack Obama."
A funeral service will be held Saturday beginning at noon at Wimberg Funeral Home, 211 E. Great Creek Road in Galloway Township.
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