Chapman received his Bachelor of Science Degree from North Carolina A&T State University and his Master of Arts from the University of Iowa. He also studied at the University of Michigan and the University of London.
He was a distinguished professor of English at Prairie View A&M University from 1966 until his retirement in 2004. During his tenure at the university he served in various capacities to include Interim Head of the Department of English and Foreign Languages and Head of Freshman Studies English; Senator on the Faculty Senate, the Prairie View Staff Association, Chairman of the Judges Committee for the Miss Prairie View A&M University Scholarship Pageant, Co-chairman of the Coronation Committee and served on various other academic and student affairs committees. He was also a long time sponsor for the Baptist Student Movement which won several national awards under his tutelage and guidance. Chapman always found ways to help students to achieve their goals and dreams. When a student approached him about publishing poetry of young poets at the university, it was Chapman that assisted the student in publishing Ebon Dialect, to much acclaim in the academy. His community involvement included membership with the Prairie View A&M University Alumni Association, Board Member of the Prairie View Federal Credit Union and the St. Peters Missionary Baptist Church.
Chapman was initiated into the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Epsilon Tau Lambda Chapter on July 13, 1991 and served the chapter as Recording Secretary and Associate Editor of the Sphinx Magazine.
Mr. Chapman is survived by three brothers, Harold Chapman, Sr. of New York; Phillip Chapman, Sr. of Greenville; Nedra Booker of Greenville; and James Clayton of Houston, Texas; and a host of other family members, fraternity brothers and friends.
Funeral services include the viewing and memorial at the Johnson Phillip All Faiths Chapel at the university from 3:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m. Friday, July 11. The Brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. will conduct their Omega Service at 6:00 p.m.
The Funeral services will be on Saturday, July 12, at 11:00 a.m. at St. Peter’s Baptist Church in Hempstead. Burial will be in the Prairie View Memorial Cemetery.
Condolences may be sent to the Family of William H. Chapman, , c/o Singleton & Sons Funeral Home, 627 New Orleans Street, Hempstead, Texas 77445.