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Robert Ruliph Morgan Carpenter, III

Robert Ruliph Morgan Carpenter, III – known to all as “Ruly”, passed away at home September 13, 2021, surrounded by his family – he was 81.

Ruly was born in 1940 in Wilmington Delaware, to Robert Ruliph Morgan Carpenter, Jr. (Bob) and Mary Kaye Carpenter.

He graduated from Tower Hill School. An athlete and scholar, Ruly excelled in football, basketball, and baseball. He attended Yale University where he played both football and baseball and was the captain of the baseball team.

0n July 10, 1960, Ruly married his childhood sweetheart, Stephanie Conklin – they were married for 61 years. He graduated from Yale in 1962 and returned home to work for the Phillies and take business courses at the University of Delaware. During that time, he assisted Tubby Raymond who was the baseball coach.

Ruly’s father insisted he learn all aspects of the business, so Ruly worked in every department. In November 1972 at the age of 32, he became the youngest Owner/President in baseball history. Developing young players was by far his favorite aspect of the game. Ruly, Paul Owens, and Dallas Green worked together to build the best farm system in baseball. After three Divisional Championships in 1976, 1977 and 1978, the Phillies won their first World Series in franchise history in 1980.

He sold the team in 1981 due to rising player salaries, which he believed were not only ruining baseball, but also a large risk to take as it was before the era of large television contracts.

After selling the team in 1981, Ruly served on the Board of Trustees at both Tower Hill School and the University of Delaware. He was the ultimate philanthropist, giving to countless charities, not only financially, but with his time. He enjoyed working outdoors at home and with the ground crews at the Ronald McDonald house and Tower Hill School.

Ruly’s passion for sports continued even after the Phillies and was fulfilled by attending University of Delaware Football and Baseball games and the Annual Blue & Gold Football game that his father Bob co-founded in 1956 and in which Ruly played in 1958. He enjoyed watching his children and grandchildren compete in sports, rarely missing a game – rain or shine. He served as an assistant volunteer coach for the Tower Hill baseball team, culminating in a State Championship in 1987.

Regardless of his many and varied accomplishments, nothing mattered more to Ruly than his family and friends. Ruly’s grandchildren knew him has “Rue Rue”, and they were his greatest source of pride along with his three children.

An avid Hunter and Fisherman, he imparted technique and passion to all his children and grandchildren. Some of Ruly’s best days were spent hunting and fishing with his family and friends in Delaware, Maryland, and South Carolina.

His friends described him as having “hands of steel and a heart of gold.” He was a quiet, humble, and selfless man who would give you everything and ask for nothing.

Ruly is survived by his wife Stephanie, his children: Bob (Leslie), David (Sharon Dellose), Cinda Carpenter (Gail Turner). Siblings; Mary Kaye “Coo” Murray (Jamie) and Keith Carpenter (Sharon), and nine grandchildren.

Ruly was larger than life to many, his charismatic personality, humility, wit, and loyalty will forever be remembered by those who had the chance to know, learn and be loved by him.
















Funeral Services

Services will be private. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations may be made in Ruly’s memory to the following: University of Delaware Athletics Blue & Gold Fund: 83 E. Main Street Newark, DE 19716; DFRC (Delaware Foundation Reaching Citizens with Intellectual Disabilities): 640 Plaza Drive Newark, DE 19702; Pilot School: 208 Woodlawn Road Wilmington, DE 19803 or  the Centerville School: 5804 Kennett Pike Wilmington, DE 19807.


    John Hughes lit a candle and writes,
    Ruly was a very good friend to me and I always enjoyed our conversations. I will remember all the laughs we had over the years!
    09/18/2021 10:29 am
    Ted Williams writes,
    My thoughts and prayers go out to the Carpenter family. I had the pleasure to meet and work with Ruly. He was a great individual.
    09/19/2021 06:11 am
    Susan D writes,
    Dear Stephanie and family: I am so sorry to hear of your loss. May your memories be a comfort.
    09/19/2021 02:08 pm
    Jeffrey Mills lit a candle and writes,
    My condolences to the Carpenter family and to the Philadelphia Phillies organization. I was born in Wilmington, Delaware and lived in Philadelphia during the late 1970's when the Phillies were in their first Golden Age. I lived just a couple of blocks from Veterans Stadium and still can remember being able to hear the crowds at my house especially during night games. Baseball, like so many sports, is a team game and so many people contributed to the success of the Philadelphia Phillies culminating in their World Series championship in 1980. Ruly was one of the biggest contributors to the team's success and had the 1981 season not been interrupted by a strike, there's no doubt in my mind the Phillies would have repeated as World Series champions. Thank you for the memories, Ruly, and God bless you and your family.
    09/19/2021 03:05 pm
    Gary and Debbie Cicchini writes,
    We lived on the Carpenter Estate in the early 1980’s as “Residential Security” with the Delaware State Police. The Carpenter’s are a great family and our thoughts and prayers are with them during this difficult time. Rest In Peace Ruly. 🙏😇
    09/20/2021 06:23 am
    BEVERLY-IN-HEAVEN AND ARNIE SHER SAMSON lit a candle and writes,
    09/23/2021 06:58 pm
    David Riggin lit a candle and writes,
    A cousin of Ruly, his mother Mary Coy was my mother’s sister. Enjoyed many good memories with Krieger cousins at the Carpenter pool, And times spent at their home in Rehoboth. Other good memories were baseball games at his home diamond on his birthdays,, and pillow fights at sleep overs. As a true Blue Hen ‘63 I am grateful and thank Ruly and all the Carpenter family for helping make UD the great university it is today. Rest In Peace Ruly❤️
    09/24/2021 02:38 pm
    David Riggin writes,
    A cousin, his mother was my mother’s sister. Good memories include swimming at his home pool, fun times at their home in Rehoboth, playing baseball at his Home diamond on his birthdays., pillow fights at sleepovers. As a Fighting Blue Hen 63’ I thank Ruly and the Carpenter family for all they have contributed to Make UD a great University. Rest In Peace cousin♥️
    09/24/2021 02:58 pm
    Janet Nelson writes,
    To Miss Stephanie, Bobby, David and Cinda, I offer my condolences but that doesn’t seem adequate with the passing of Ruly. The description of him having hands of steel but a heart of gold is so true. He was a man whose countenance appeared so serious, like Dave Nelson. But I enjoyed his dry wit and watching his passion for Delaware Football 🏈! I remember when I brought my first IPhone to a game back in the beginning and Ruly discovered my ability to get ESPN updates on it! He would quietly inquire about college football games that he had an “interest” in! Sitting next to him on occasion at the games, I always had someone to share my French fries with! I can only imagine what you are feeling right now. I was lucky to know three great family men: my father, Dave Nelson and Ruly. Miss Stephanie: he may have driven you crazy on occasion but you were a amazing couple. Your love will burn bright and hopefully help fill your heart again. Bobby, David and Cinda: I felt lucky to know your family through being a part of Dave and Shirley’s. Your father’s kindness and humor made me not miss my own dad or David Nelson so much! I hope you have people in your lives that will help you fill this huge void, not to forget Ruly but by their participation in your lives, helps you find memories of the wonder Ruly represented. I apologize for being long winded. Warmest Regards, Janet Houston Nelson
    10/03/2021 10:24 pm
    Mark Toner writes,
    To Mrs. Carpenter and kids whole family im sorry for your lost of Ruly. He was helpful to me power washing his house by the fire place. He had a sense of humor. Ruly in heaven now watching out for his family from Mark E. Toner
    10/12/2021 01:24 pm
    Joe Grace writes,
    An absolute special & a very good MAN! Please, God grant Him eternal life, and peace to His Family!⚾️
    01/26/2022 08:53 am

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