Life Story Visitation
Friday, September 24, 2021
5:00 PM to 7:00 PM EDT
Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes
6080 Stadium Drive
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
Food, Drinks & Stories will be shared.
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Charity of one's choice
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
With admirable athletic focus, both as a player and a coach, Andrew "Marty" Chopp, Jr. leaves behind many great memories. Whether he played a role in your life as a father, competitor, or friend - you could count on his passion for striving to be the best he could be. We will cherish the times in life we experienced with him.
On Sunday, July 1, in Paw Paw, Michigan, amongst all the events whirling around them, Andrew Sr. and Janet (Giddings) Chopp were making news of their own with the birth of their first baby boy. They named him Andrew Jr., and he was the first of what would eventually be six children to complete their family. "Marty," the name he used throughout his life, enjoyed being a big brother and took pride in looking after his younger siblings.
To support the growing family, Marty's father worked at the Parchment Paper Mill. His mother stayed at home to keep the kids happy, and life organized. Marty attended Mattawan Consolidated Schools until his family moved to Parchment.
He inherited a natural athleticism from his father and participated in several sports as a youth. This talented ability kept him busy in high school, where he played baseball and basketball all four years - plus a bit of golf.
In 1974, Marty celebrated his high school graduation from Parchment High School. After earning his diploma, he attended Kalamazoo Valley Community College and competed in baseball. For two years, Marty played shortstop and second baseman. He continued to play a year for Jacksonville State and finished his baseball career at Grand Valley State University.
Marty thoroughly enjoyed his time on each baseball team. Additionally, he had a natural knack for sociability and surrounded himself with a large group of friends. Naturally, he moved into coaching baseball at Grand Valley State University, which afforded him even more opportunities to meet new people. Eventually, during his coaching years of 1985 to 1998, he moved into the head coach position. Notably, he celebrated the honor of being the winningest coach during his time. Baseball was a great passion in Marty's life but he a greater passion was raising his sons Tyler, Connor, and Tanner.
The Chopp family, along with some of their extended family, regularly camped together. Due to their love of the outdoors, this was a suitable activity for many years. Greenville and Decatur were two of their favorite camping spots. Fishing and hunting also fit into their camping agendas - they fished the Muskegon River and Nichols Lake. The catch of the day provided Marty the chance to cook at camp - a task he liked very much. Like Marty, his children were athletic and found that their father supported and encouraged sports. They lived by Chopp's 10 Commandments and the intensity of their father's coaching beliefs.
Marty worked as a mail carrier for the United States Postal Service for many years and retired a few years ago. After retirement, Marty enjoyed being outdoors fishing and hunting, regular exercise, and staying fit.
Always in his heart, he cheered on his Detroit Tigers (sometimes actually IN the stands) and relished the stats of his favorite player of all time, Ty Cobb. His mancave showcased his baseball fandom as well as his affection for Zebco Rods and Reels. In his free time, Marty also did some woodcarving. It would have been typical for him to turn up the country music while working - and afterward, he might crack open a can of Labatt's beer with a dog by his side. Recently, Marty kept closer to home after retiring about a year and a half ago. He held his social calendar but with a bit more reservation. Sadly, after 65 years of life, Marty died unexpectedly at his home on Sunday, September 19, 2021. We will miss the presence of Marty in our lives, but we will not forget him or his legacy.
Andrew "Marty" Chopp, Jr. was preceded in death by his sister, Tina Chopp, and Brenda's significate other, Adam Russell. Surviving are 3 boys: Tyler, Connor, and Tanner Chopp; parents; Andy and Janet Chopp; 4 siblings: Ron (Diane) Chopp, Gary (Becky) Chopp, Brenda Beck and Dan (Karol) Chopp; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins. Please join us on Friday, September 24, from 5-7 PM at a Life Story Visitation to share food, drinks, and stories: at Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes, 6080 Stadium Drive, Kalamazoo (269) 375-2900. Cremation will follow with burial at Maple Grove Cemetery, Mattawan. Visit Marty's webpage at BetzlerLifeStory.com to archive favorite memories, photos and sign his guestbook. Make memorial contributions to the charity of one's choice.