of us would traipse around all over the place trying to support the college, and that was just a blast. It was wonderful.”
Dr. Richard Midcap, a former Chesapeake vice president and now president of Garrett College, interviewed Silver as part of an historical project at the college.
“Dr. Silver was one of the driving forces that helped turn the idea of a regional community college into a reality,” Midcap said.
Even as students began meeting for classes at the newly opened Queen Anne’s County High School, “they were always coming up with contingencies for how to make the college go, even without the infrastructure that they needed to have buildings and places for students to be,” Melissa Silver said.
Silver and his wife Dr. Jane Hartman Silver worked as a team throughout their careers, she said. Both were tireless advocates of higher education.
“He would tackle and embrace the role as Chief Administrator/president and she would work beside him to fulfill his role as well as serving of Director of the Student Counseling Center,” Melissa Silver wrote in his obituar y.
Born on Dec. 5, 1926, in Trenton, New Jersey, Silver joined the Army Air Corps at 16, and the military comprised his second, parallel career. He earned degrees at Northwest Missouri State, Rutgers and Temple universities.
He was predeceased by his wife in 2002 and is survived by his son Dr. George R. Silver of Goldsboro; his daughter Melissa; and his three grandchildren, Dr. George R. Silver Jr. and family; Keith L. Silver; and Cara M. Camaioni and family, all of Goldsboro.
Silver served three colleges as president: Chesapeake College, North Greenville University and Ocean County College.
“He went to places where there was a big challenge; he never went to a place where everything was status quo and all he had to do was keep one finger on the steering wheel,” Melissa Silver said.
Silver said her father was also a “soldier at heart” and “a profoundly committed patriot all of his life.” For more than five decades he actively served in the military: first, in the Army Air Corps, followed by the Army National Guard and then the Army Reserve, from which he retired as a colonel.
He found time to serve as a leader in his church and many civic organizations in the capacities of trustee, officer and fundraiser.
Silver said her parents “were going 100 miles an hour all the time, and they complemented each other so well because they had similar goals from a very early age. They both believed in the inherent greatness of getting an education for anyone; they both believed in using their skills and their abilities and any energy they had to improve the life of anyone they encountered.”
Melissa Silver said her father “personified the true meaning of an altruist” and that his “driving desire and his calling to help others improve their lives, basic decency, and ongoing concern for others knew no bounds.”
“I was fortunate enough to get to know Dr. Silver after his retirement, and his love of Chesapeake College never waned — he always wanted to know the latest about what was happening at the college,” Midcap said. “He provided such great leadership as Chesapeake’s first president, and I think we all owe him a tremendous debt of gratitude.”
To make a scholarship donation in Silver’s name, please visit www.chesapeake.edu/chesapeakecollege-foundation/donatenow.
Donations may also be made to First Baptist Church of Goldsboro, 125 S. John St., Goldsboro, NC 27530.