Wood Rustic 08

John Philip Chamberlain

January 29, 1954 ~ May 10, 2022 (age 68)


John Philip Chamberlain of Alpine, NY, died peacefully on May 10, 2022, after a brief illness, surrounded by family in Ithaca, NY.

Born January 29, 1954, the 5th of 8 children, John grew up on the family farm in Hopeville, IA. He attended Murray Community School where he was the 1972 class valedictorian. He learned farming, electrical work, carpentry, and an appreciation of nature from his family. After serving in the Navy with “The World Famous Blue Sharks”, he moved to Ames, IA where he earned a bachelor’s degree in anthropology at Iowa State University. John met his wife, Barbara Morley, at ISU and they married in 1981. Their children, Emma Chamberlain Morley and Galen Chamberlain Morley, were born in Ames.

The family moved to Trumansburg, NY in 1988, where John turned his passion for woodworking into a fulltime profession. In addition to cabinetry, he made gorgeous bowls, rolling pins, and toy spinning tops on his lathe. They moved to Alpine, NY and, after retiring, he joined Ithaca’s Handwork cooperative where he delighted in speaking with members and customers.

John was kind and gentle, had a subtle sense of humor, and enormous energy. He loved cooking with Barb, playing with kids, helping with house renovations, working in the garden, and walking forest trails. He was a Cayuga Trails Club trail steward, caring for a mile of the Finger Lakes Trail. With family and friends, he thrived on canoeing and camping, especially in the Adirondacks.

John was fascinated by history and natural history and read voraciously. His sweeping knowledge resulted in thoughtful and animated conversations about history, science, politics, the environment, and international relations. He savored travel, lived for a year in Chiapas, Mexico with Barb, and loved speaking Spanish with his granddaughters and others.

John treasured his family and friends and was cherished by them. He was predeceased by his parents, Francis and Grace Chamberlain, and sister Carol Ann. He is survived by his wife Barb, daughter Emma, son Galen (McKenzie Jones), and by his siblings Steve (Mary), Jeanne Gaumer (Randy), Bob (Kathy), Jim (Julie), Mark, and Becky Pennington (Rusty); by his grandchildren Genivieve, Lily, Felix, Arlo, and Leif; and by many nieces and nephews, other family members, and dear friends.

Our deepest thanks to the staff at Cayuga Medical Center, and to our precious family and friends who lovingly and generously cared for us during this trying time, as always.

A Gathering and burial will be held at 1:00pm on Sunday, May 15, 2022 at Greensprings Natural Cemetery, 293 Irish Hill Road, Newfield.


To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of John Philip Chamberlain, please visit our floral store.


Graveside Service
May 15, 2022

Greensprings Natural Cemetery Preserve
293 Irish Hill Road
Newfield, NY 14867

© 2022 Ness-Sibley Funeral Home. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS & TA | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Accessibility