Chester James

April 11, 1947

Richmond, Virginia

A man of many trades and talents

I love that this morning’s sunrise does not define itself by last night’s sunset.

The Backstory

Love, cherish, and celebrate the people who make life special

Remembering Chester

Chester was born on April 11, 1947 in Richmond, Virginia to Marie and Matthew James. He was the eldesto of three siblings, a protective brother of his two younger sisters; Mary Ann and Janine. He graduated from Brown University in 1969 with a degree in History and continued on at Brown to receive his Ph.D. in Ancient History shortly thereafter. He married Chloe Esposito, his high school sweetheart, in 1970. After moving back home to Richmond, Virginia he began working for the University of Richmond as a professor and stayed until his retirement in 2002.

Over four years, the couple welcomed two children (Diane and Lane) into their home, and Chester set about teaching them the power of kindness, laughter, and learning from your mistakes. His children remember him as a gentle, patient, and silly father who encouraged them to pursue their goals and follow their dreams.

Aside from his brilliance in history and his knowledge of the ancient world, Chester was accomplished at woodworking and gardening and was well known around the neighborhood for building chairs, tables, bookcases, etc. and bringing around his delicious vegetables for anyone in need. He was a generous individual who loved learning and who was passionate about education and a good steak. He was an active and dedicated member of the Christian Church and often volunteered at the local shelter. His favorite hobby of them all was spending time with his wife Chloe, his children Diane and Lane, and his 4 grandchildren, Celine, Brooke, Robby, and Chase. 


Images of the most memorable moments

Remembering Chester James



Chester loved to paint in his final years. 2019


Chester and Chloe enjoy the wandering the winding alleys of Spain.


Chester enjoys the beach with wife Chloe and friends. 1967


Chester loved to read. He was always, always reading. 2013


Chester and Chloe. 2019


Chester, siblings, and neighborhood friends. 1953


Colorado camping trip with Chloe and family. 2010


Candids of Chester. 2019


Chester and Chloe enjoy fall in Maine. 2017


Chester enjoys time with family.


Christmas time for baby Chester, 1948


Chester and Chloe, 2010


Chester with his grandchildren. 2007


Chester and Chloe enjoy a trip to New York. 2017


Chester, sister Mary Ann and the neighborhood kids. 1952



The memories, milestones, and little moments in between

My Chester

My Chester

Love Chloe

I remember it all Chester, the love, the tears, the smiles, the cries, the whispers, the story of us. The most kind and generous man - I was so lucky to love you and so lucky to share our lives together with our beautiful family. It was more than I could have ever dreamed of...the boy who stood up for me when everyone else chuckled at my thick Italian accent in English class all those many years ago. 

Dammi la tua mano e carriamo uniti per tutta la vita. 
Give me your hand and we run together for a lifetime.

Our big brother, our protector

Our big brother, our protector

Mary Ann and Janine

Chester will be dearly missed. He made an impact on everyone he met, from his family, siblings, grandchildren, friends, neighbors, colleagues, and students, you always left time spent with Chester feeling happier. 

It didn't matter whether we 2 years old or 62, Chester was ALWAYS there as our protector. From neighborhood bullies to ex-boyfriends, scraped knees, illness, divorce, new jobs, lay-offs, winning the swim meet, a shoulder to cry on or a friend to laugh with - Chester was there. There aren't enough words in the dictionary to tell people what a kind soul he was. If you knew him, you were one of the lucky ones. We love you Chester and wanted to capture everything amazing about you in this StorySpot. A place for stories, a place for memories, a place for everything in-between. 

Remembering Grandpa Chester

Remembering Grandpa Chester

Celine's Story

My favorite memory of Grandpa Chester was when I was in the talent show. I had practiced my dance routine to Our Song by Taylor Swift probably over 500 times. When they called my name to perform I was WAY too scared to go up in front of everyone and perform. 

My grandpa had driven up to see it and I felt so sad, embarrassed, and crushed I couldn't do it. Instead of making me feel bad, Grandpa Chester had gone home and rearranged the whole backyard and set up a stage with lights for me to perform on in front of the family. He was the MC and the opening act. It was the most thoughtful and kind thing anyone has ever done to me until this day. I miss you today and always Grandpa!

My oldest pal

My oldest pal


You were my first friend and best friend. I consider myself very fortunate to have been able to sit around playing checkers, talking about girls, and laughing about stupid stuff with you for 70 years. I won't forget you, buddy, you left a legacy behind. 


The little moments that matter

Chester is born

Date: Apr 11, 1947

Chester's two little sisters are born (Mary Ann and Janine).

Date: Aug 17, 1949 - Dec 8, 1950

Elementary school (kindergarten through 6th-grade graduation)

Date: Aug 1, 1951 - May 30, 1958

Junior High School for Chester, attended Randolph School.

Date: Aug 1, 1958 - May 31, 1961

Chester attends Armstrong High School. He graduates as salutatorian and is asked to speak at graduation.

Date: Sep 1, 1961 - Jun 1, 1965

When Chester met Chloe in English class, yes...down to the day.

Date: Apr 18, 1962

Chester attends Brown University and graduates with a B.S. degree in history.

Date: Aug 1, 1965 - May 22, 1969

Chloe and Chester get married at a small ceremony in Richmond, Virginia.

Date: Jun 17, 1970

Chester returns to Brown University to get his Ph.D in Ancient History.

Date: Sep 1, 1970 - Jun 1, 1974

Diane is born, Chester, and Chloe's first child.

Date: May 10, 1972

Chester and Chloe move back to Richmond Virginia and buy their first home.

Date: Jul 8, 1974

Chester begins his teaching career at the University of Richmond, one of the most popular history professors to date!

Date: Aug 1, 1974

Lane is born, baby number two for the couple!

Date: Dec 2, 1974

Chester retires from teaching!

Date: Jul 2, 2002


The songs that matter most