Bryan Heaton Schempf

October 14, 2023
Bryan Heaton Schempf

Gifts & Memorial Donations



Bryan Heaton Schempf, beloved husband, father, brother, grandfather, law partner, and friend, passed away peacefully at home on October 14, 2023 following a nine month battle with Glioblastoma, a rare form of brain cancer. He was born in Rochester, NY to Marjorie and William Schempf on April 6, 1947.

Bryan was a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy and retired from active duty as Staff Judge Advocate of TRADOC (then at Ft Monroe) in the rank of Colonel. He entered private practice, first as an associate at Stein & Smith, then as a partner with JBW&K in Newport News, and finally as a partner in his own firm. He and Marilyn met in Germany where he was first stationed and she was working as a teacher for the DOD Dependents Schools System. He and Marilyn had a great life together and were inseparable soul-mates. With their two daughters Allison and
Laura, they traveled around the US and Europe. Bryan was an avid sailor and reveled in being out on the water. It was in private law practice, however, that Bryan found his passion as an advocate. He worked tirelessly for his clients and regarded the practice of law as a secular calling.

He is survived by his wife, Marilyn; daughters Allison and Laura (son-in-law Marc); grandsons Marco and Theo; siblings Ruthanne (brother-in-law, Joel) and Kevin (sister-in-law Jo Ann) brothers-in-law Allen Vandel (Shirley) and Jerry Vandel and numerous nieces and nephews. He also is survived by his law partner, Mike Ware, with whom he founded the York County law firm of Schempf & Ware, and by his long-time paralegals, Amy Reider, Pam Denney and Jessica Deach.

A Celebration of Life will be held at the Williamsburg United Methodist Church, 500 Jamestown Road, Williamsburg, Virginia on October 28, 2023 at 2:00pm. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in Bryan’s name to the charity of your choice.


Memorial Service

Saturday, October 28, 2023
2:00 PM

Williamsburg United Methodist Church - Directions
500 Jamestown Road
Williamsburg, VA 23188

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  • February 12, 2024
    J.Peter Staples says:
    I was a classmate of Bryan’s at Cornwall Central High and at West Point. An excellent fellow. I was always glad to see him at reunions or other occasions. Very warm and kind. Marilyn, I think we might have met once at a WP reunion.

  • November 01, 2023
    Robert Hrvoj says:
    COL Schempf was a great man. It was my honor and privilege to have served under his leadership. He will be missed by many. May God grant him peace and eternal rest.

  • October 31, 2023
    John Carrell says:
    I first met Bryan at Fort Sheridan during my first tour of duty in the U.S. Army. As a young Captain I thought he set a great example of what a lawyer, officer, soldier, and leader should be. I am so sorry for the loss of Colonel Shempf, he leaves a great legacy behind by all he achieved in his profession and most importantly his beloved family.

  • October 31, 2023
    Karen Judkins says:
    Bryan was a great example to me as an officer, attorney, parent and caring member of the community when I was a young attorney and new mother at TRADOC. He taught me about balancing roles and how to be supportive of others' challenges, while still drawing excellence out of each person. He and Marilyn opened their home to the office and created joy. I've thought of both of them throughout my career, striving to live up to the standards they set. Bryan was kind, multi-talented and extraordinarily intelligent. I'm glad to have known and served with him. I wish for a gentle grieving for Marilyn and the entire family.

  • October 30, 2023
    Beth Wilson says:
    Dearest Marilyn, I am so sorry for your loss of your husband, Bryan. I learned how close God is to the broken hearted and I continue to experience this daily. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. Please allow me to take you out to lunch or dinner when you are ready. I am here to listen, hug and love on you. Beth Ann Wilson (757) 869-4298