John David Clapperton | April 15, 1950 – January 21, 2019
It is with great sorrow that we inform you of the passing of our co-founder, and friend, Dave Clapperton. Dave lost his courageous battle with cancer on Monday, and his family, our company, and the construction industry as a whole, has lost a great man.
Dave was born and raised in suburban Pittsburgh and graduated from Westminster College in 1972. Later that year, Dave went to work for H.H. Robertson Co., a Fortune 500 Company and the premier manufacturer of metal architectural products at the time. He was an award-winning salesman for Robertson working in the Atlanta District Office and consistently outsold his peers. In 1979, Dave felt wronged by H.H. Robertson over being denied an incentive bonus and in a supreme act of courage and standing up for what’s right, he resigned. Interestingly, his friend and colleague, Ted S. Miller, actually quit first and then quit on behalf of Dave! In a story Ted liked to tell, he had to track Dave down on the road and let him know the good/bad news. On October 15, 1979, Ted and Dave sat down at Ted’s kitchen table and began a manufacturer’s representative firm, The Miller-Clapperton Partnership.
During the 1980’s, the company specialized in premium, custom designed architectural metalwork. Working as a specialized installing subcontractor, MillerClapperton built a solid reputation in the southeastern United States as a reliable source for polished stainless steel, bronze, and specialty aluminum architectural metalwork. They incorporated the business in 1982. In 1988, Doug Bruton, became the third partner of MillerClapperton and organized a facility for the fabrication of Metal Composite Material (MCM) panels. What began at a kitchen table with zero dollars in revenue and few dollars of capital is today a company that has performed work in 44 states and multiple countries, has employed hundreds of people, and ranks as one of the leading sub-contracting firms in the country, in addition to being recognized year-after-year as a top place to work in the Atlanta metro area.
Dave was a devoted husband to his wife, Maureen, for 47 years and together they enjoyed travel and spending time in the North Georgia mountains. Dave was a member of Catholic Church of St. Ann in Marietta, Georgia and was an active member of the Metal Construction Association. He was a skilled woodworker and he enjoyed hiking with his beloved Golden Retriever, Molly.
In late 2016, Dave was diagnosed with neuroendocrine cancer. Dave was tough and he demonstrated that with his courage over the last two years. He educated himself on the various treatments available and fought until his last breath on earth. He would answer questions about his condition if you asked, but he never offered up the details of his insurmountable battle without being prompted and he never wallowed in pity, nor let cancer define him.
Besides being a successful businessman and cancer fighter, Dave was a man of extraordinary integrity, compassion, generosity, and humor. Dave was as honest as the day is long, he was generous with his time and his money, and he treated employees, customers, and vendors with respect. He had a great laugh, a kind heart, and he will be missed terribly.
Thank you for your prayers for the Clapperton Family … and the MillerClapperton Family.
A celebration of the life of Dave Clapperton will take place at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, January 30th , at Catholic Church of Saint Ann located at 4905 Roswell Road in Marietta, Georgia.
Donations in memory of Dave can be made to Catholic Church of St. Ann – St. Vincent de Paul Society, Aflac Children’s Cancer Center, or The University of Florida – College of Veterinary Medicine.