2021 Regular Session

To: Rules

By: Representatives Roberson, Creekmore IV, Taylor

House Concurrent Resolution 38

(As Adopted by House and Senate)


     WHEREAS, it is written in II Corinthians 4:17-18, "For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal," and as such, the immaculate author and finisher of our soul's destiny summoned the mortal presence of dearly beloved, Mr. Robert Daniel "Dan" Camp, who was blessed with a servant's heart to help his fellowman, to eternal rest on Sunday, October 25, 2020, at the age of 79, as he made life's final transition from earthly travailing to heavenly reward, rendering great sorrow and loss to his family and many friends throughout Central Mississippi and beyond; and

     WHEREAS, the Starkville community lost an imaginative and transformative visionary, public servant and community pillar with the passing of Mr. Camp, born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on April 13, 1941, and raised in Tupelo, Mississippi, by his late parents, Mr. Dewey W. Camp, Sr., and Mrs. Opal Quay Webb Camp, and there is now a hush in our hearts as we come together to pay our respects to the memory of one who has been called to join that innumerable heavenly caravan; and

     WHEREAS, entrenched with a keen awareness of the importance of receiving an education, Dan graduated from Tupelo High School in 1959, which tapped the wellspring of his intellectual curiosity and insatiable thirst for knowledge, which culminated in his earning a bachelor's degree in education from Mississippi State University in 1963, and spawned the successful pursuit and attainment of his master's degree in education from North Carolina State University in 1967; and

     WHEREAS, having taught industrial education for a stint in Vicksburg, it would be the allure of Starkville that beckoned him back to the flourishing Golden Triangle to establish his roots and make a lasting impression upon the college town, an impression that would bring him much notice and acclaim well beyond what he ever imagined, initially as a member of the MSU faculty, and subsequently as an artistically clairvoyant developer; and

     WHEREAS, even after his departure from the classroom to fan the flame of property development initially ignited during his years at North Carolina State University, to breathe life into forgotten property and bring a resurgence of vitality and community, Mr. Camp remained deeply committed to public education as a member of the Board of Trustees for the Starkville School District, wherein such capacity, he was an ardent champion of the arts and supporter of the Starkville Arts Council; and

     WHEREAS, in 1969, Mr. Camp began acquiring property in the Cotton District, creating an eclectic oasis of tightly packed houses and businesses, ushering in the New Urbanism movement in a practice now commonly referred to as mixed-use development, which captured the fascination and has been the inspiration for urban developers ever since; and

     WHEREAS, now a pedestrian-friendly, architecturally varied neighborhood replete with cottages, duplexes, apartments, street-level shops, courtyards and fountains, the Cotton District, which was birthed with Mr. Camp's purchase of eight small townhouses, is now one of the most desirable addresses in Starkville; and

     WHEREAS, it was in this new venture that Mr. Camp would thrive, and because of the growing success and mass appeal of the Cotton District, complete with its own arts festival, he would garner the title "Mayor of the Cotton District," a nomenclature that was forecasting to the official assignment of office he would later assume in 2005, upon being elected Mayor of Starkville, where he would bring his intellectual acumen and business expertise; and

     WHEREAS, as fate would lend itself to being built in accordance with the blueprint divinely designed for the pattern of his life by the Great Deity and grand architect of our lives' destiny, Dan's love, chivalry and affection pierced the heart of the young belle who would assume his last name as Gemma T. Camp after exchanging the nuptials of holy matrimony in 1981, and embarked upon a 40-year journey together; and

     WHEREAS, cognizant of the words recorded in I John 3:2, "Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is," Mr. Camp strove diligently to exemplify his zealous commitment to the people of Starkville and causes dear to his heart; and

     WHEREAS, though he has traversed life's river to now stand upon the celestial shores in wonderment of Heaven's grandeur in glorious reunion with the kindred spirits of his parents who transitioned before him, the memories of Mr. Camp will continue to flourish in the hearts and minds of his survivors:  his devoted wife, Gemma T. Camp; sons, Robert A. (Emily) Camp and Frederick Bonn (Jessica) Camp; granddaughters, Corban and Josephine; siblings, Dewey W. Camp, Jr., and Bonnie W. Camp; and multiple nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends; and

     WHEREAS, we encourage the Camp family to find solace from these words recorded in II Corinthians 1:3-4, "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God."; and

     WHEREAS, it is the policy of this Legislature to commend the monumental life of genuine and selfless individuals of Mr. Camp's caliber, whose life's light illuminated the path of hope and change throughout the State of Mississippi, as well as for all he encountered along his earthly sojourn:

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, THE SENATE CONCURRING THEREIN, That we do hereby commend the life, legacy and contributions of Mr. Robert Daniel "Dan" Camp, the incomparable "Mayor of the Cotton District," and express deepest sympathy upon his passing to his family and friends.

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That copies of this resolution be furnished to the family of Mr. Robert Daniel "Dan" Camp and to the members of the Capitol Press Corps.