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In Memory of Travis Valentine, Omega Delta 2005

Wednesday, February 22, 2017   (10 Comments)
Posted by: Holly Stewart
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March 11, 2017, Chi Psi gathering in York, PA.  Chi Psi Brothers and guests are invited to a gathering on Saturday evening, March 11, prior to the Sunday, March 12 Memorial Service to celebrate Travis’ life.  We will gather at Stone Grille & Taphouse  www.stonegrilleandtaphouse.com at 204 St Charles Way, York, PA 17402 https://goo.gl/maps/tk53R4aCoWr which is a short walk from both the Hampton Inn and Suites and the Country Inn and Suites just off I-83 south of York.   We will begin to gather at 6:30 pm, but there is neither a fixed “start” time nor a fixed “end time.”  The management is going to rope off a portion of an enclosed patio for us so we can all be together.  But we can move back and forth to the main bar area for music and a livelier atmosphere. The kitchen is open until 11:00 pm, so we can order from the menu anytime. If you have not already done so, please contact cliffmassa3@gmail.com to report that you (and others) will be joining the group at some point during the evening so the restaurant can be given a good projected number.  

 

 


 

Travis Valentine, Omega Delta 2005 – a founder of his Alpha and a recipient of the Stanley Birge Award – passed away at age 33 from a brain aneurysm on February 14, 2017 at his residence in Washington D.C.

 

As Travis lived his life, he was the epitome of a Chi Psi gentleman. He showed many of us what the best of our Fraternity can be, as well as what an exemplary friend is on a day-to-day basis.

 

Born March 16, 1983 in York, PA, Travis was the son of Marlena Baker Lehr and step son of Daniel E. Lehr. He was currently employed as a computer programmer for LivingSocial.

 

A 2001 graduate of Central York High School, Br. Valentine earned a degree cum laude in government and international politics from George Mason University in 2005. As a freshman, Travis was one of 13 students who became founding members of Chi Psi Fraternity at George Mason University. Upon graduation, he was awarded the Stanley J. Birge Award, the National Fraternity's highest undergraduate honor. The award is presented to that graduating senior who exemplifies the best attributes of a Chi Psi Brother through his outstanding contributions to his community, his academic work, and to his Brothers during his undergraduate years. After graduation in 2005, Travis was elected to the board of directors of the Alumni Corporation of Alpha Omega Delta in mid-2005 and served until mid-2011.  He was the first Omega Delta alumnus to be elected to the board. From mid-2007 until 2010, he served as Treasurer of the corporation. In September 2005, he participated in the charter Initiation for Alpha Rho Delta.

 

 

Survivors are his mother Marlena Baker Lehr and step father Daniel E. Lehr, maternal grandmother, Jeanne L. Baker of York; aunts and uncles, Ken and Joni Theesfield, of Chesapeake, VA, Dan and Jolena Arcuri of Ellicott City, MD; and cousins, Chris and Sarah Arcuri and Caleb Baker. He was "uncle" to Hudson and Ben Potter. He considered longtime friend, Dr. Ajay Verghese, of Riverside, CA a "brother." Also among survivors are numerous close friends, co-workers, and business associates. He was preceded in death by his maternal grandfather, Charles Baker.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Travis loved cookies. He also was a huge dog lover, and he often talked about his parents' dog in York. He had a deep commitment to helping kids and trying to offer support and encouragement, and he taught himself how to code and built YourTurn, a platform that connects a learner with a mentor for advice on how to achieve their goals.

 

A celebration of Travis' life will be held in a memorial service starting at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, March 12, 2017 at First Presbyterian Church, 225 E. Market St., York, PA.  This will include a brief Chi Psi memorial service as well. A reception at the church will follow the conclusion of the overall service. Travis’ parents welcome hearing from Chi Psis who knew Travis. Their mailing address is -- Mr. and Mrs. Dan Lehr, 160 Lynbrook Drive North, York,  PA 17402.

 

The family requests that memorial gifts in honor of Travis be made to The Chi Psi Educational Trust, Inc., Jeffrey Hall, 45 Rutledge St., Nashville, TN 37210. Please specify that you are donating in honor of Travis either under "Donor Comments" on the website or in a note which accompanies a check mailed to Jeffrey Hall.  Gifts will be used by The Trust to begin an endowment for an undergraduate scholarship in Travis’ name.  Gifts may also be made to Code for Progress, 1726 Connecticut Ave., NW, Suite 400, Washington, DC 20009.

 

Please contact Cliff Massa III at cliffmassa3@gmail.com if you plan to attend the memorial service so that an accurate number can be provided to Mrs. Lehr to help with the count for the post-service reception planning.  Also, please tell Cliff whether you will be staying in York on Saturday evening or Sunday evening to ensure that a Chi Psi event can be put together efficiently on one evening. Once information is gathered, this page will be updated with the time and location of the event.  

 

Hotel Options:

Hampton Inn and Suites York South

The Hampton Inn is Cliff's recommendation and will be "Chi Psi Central" but all three options are close to each other and close to I-83 south of York.

Country Inn and Suites

Holiday Inn Express  

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comments...

William R. Rohrer says...
Posted Tuesday, April 11, 2017
Travis Valentine is the man who got me the most acquainted with Chi Psi. He was my Pledge Educator for the Omega Delta Pledge Class of Spring 2005; made up of myself, Kyle Brewer, Corey Callahan, Matt Sarrano, and Josh Litt. Zeid Kalarikkal was our assistant Pledge Educator. Travis was a strict Pledge Ed. No less serious about making sure we learn the material and what it all meant than the best teachers we all had growing up. A lot of my Mason Professors and Instructors could have learned something from him.
William R. Rohrer says...
Posted Tuesday, April 11, 2017
I didn't get a sound feel for Travis as a peer until after we both graduated. It took awhile for me to take him off the teacher pedestal I put him on. Eventually, I did learn to see him eye to eye as an equal Brother and not as a superior. Whenever we saw each other after I removed him from the high horse I placed him on, I would mention how awesome his hair looked and he would ask how my older Brother is doing. I would answer good or fine. For those that don't know my older Brother is autistic. I was always surprised by Travis asking that because my older Brother is almost always in a consistent state of fine. He carries with him a much lighter weight of worry over life than the rest of us do. But Travis did not know my older Brother's idiosyncrasies. It was just his way of being conscientious and a good fraternal Brother.
William R. Rohrer says...
Posted Tuesday, April 11, 2017
As our conversations progressed past the obligatory greeting, I always felt like Travis was holding something back. Like maintaining a calm and cool demeanor was important to him because he was maybe afraid to say a wrong or weird thing for whatever reason. A concept I am completely oblivious too. One of my favorite accepts of being a Chi Psi Brother is the luxury of being able to say any foolish thing when in company of fellow Brothers. I know Travis knew that. I just wish he put it into practice around me. I would have loved to experience his inner weird. But while I let my hair down whenever I could, Travis stayed cool. Either way he would be cool to me. He is an awesome person that encompassed everything I love about a committed Brother. I will miss him dearly but look forward to the day I get to see him again.
William R. Rohrer says...
Posted Tuesday, April 11, 2017
There was so much more living we had to do with him. We were supposed to continue seeing Travis regularly and hearing about the milestones of his life. Like one of his apps becoming popular, meeting his significant other, and talking to him about how we did fraternal things way better in college than how the Actives are currently doing them. Unfortunately, none of that is going to happen now but it will happen later in Heaven.
William R. Rohrer says...
Posted Tuesday, April 11, 2017
We will all get to pick up with Travis where we each left off with him and actually get to have a beer with him because then he won't have an excuse to not have something alcoholic since it won't be able to hurt him or any of us then. After Corey called me with the horrible news, I prayed to God and Jesus to take care of Travis in the next stage of life. Then I asked my Father and my Aunt Carol to go greet Travis when he got settled. We will all get to see Travis again but in the meantime he will still be around watching over us. We speak of the figurative Guardian Spirit of Chi Psi in a general sense but now Omega Delta has a real and specific Guardian Spirit in Travis.
Christopher M. Baker says...
Posted Sunday, March 5, 2017
Travis, you made this world a better place.
Andrew Dewing says...
Posted Wednesday, March 1, 2017
An expression of Chi Psi interest presented by Travis and a small group of extraordinarily dedicated friends in the summer of 2002 and a temporary career stop for me, just a few miles from the George Mason campus, that included a number of available weekends. These might seem to be entirely random events. But they were, in fact, links in the silver chain that binds all of us, and thus was started a friendship that has ended too soon, but will be cherished for an eternity. Long after any reasonable expectation, Travis would call on me where I eventually settled in Tidewater. On his visits with family and Brothers, he'd call and suggest we meet for a burger. Or drop by the house with something he had picked up for my kids. Travis' courtesies and kindnesses is only exceeded by my admiration for all that he was able to accomplish. To know him was to enjoy a rare privilege. To miss him is a given. Grant him, Lord, eternal joy, pure delight, without alloy.
Edmund M. Amorosi says...
Posted Sunday, February 26, 2017
Travis was a natural leader. He was a solid guy and a pioneer as a founding member of the Alpha at George Mason University. I hope his pioneering spirit lives on through his Brothers in Chi Psi, his friends, and family. My condolences to his family.
Samuel C. Bessey says...
Posted Thursday, February 23, 2017
Thank you, Cliff.
Cliff Massa III says...
Posted Thursday, February 23, 2017
What better description of our Brother can be offered than Stanley’s familiar eloquence from so many decades ago: “. . . if through the years the men in this Alpha and those whom the routine of life brings into familiar contact, are just a little stronger, just a little happier, just a little more sensitive to the finer things in life because they knew you, then you will have found the true meaning of Chi Psi.” Well, Travis found that meaning quickly and he lived it daily and, by doing so, he set a wonderful example for all who knew him to follow. Cliff Massa III, Epsilon Delta `71

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