Robert Warren Samuel, Colonel, United States Army (retired) passed away Sunday, November 23, 2003, surrounded by his wife of 60 years and his eight daughters. A dedicated military officer, devoted husband, loving father, and loyal brother and friend, “Sam” completed a 30-year Army career before settling in Alexandria, Virginia, near Mount Vernon for the final 30 years of his full life.
Born in Trinidad, Colorado, on June 11, 1920, Sam moved to Grand Junction, Colorado, his senior year of high school.
In July 1941 he entered the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, graduating in three years on D-Day, June 6, 1944. That same year on October 7th he married his high school sweetheart, Margaret Hall, and then boarded ship for the European theater on Christmas Eve.
Following post-war duty in Germany, Sam served as an ROTC instructor at Michigan State and as a logistics officer with the Far East Command in Japan, before returning to West Point as an associate professor.
The final half of Sam's career took him twice to Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, to Vietnam, to the Pentagon, and to Germany, where he commanded a Support Brigade and was G-4 of VII Corps.
His educational achievements included a Masters in Engineering from the University of Michigan and completion of courses of study at both the Army Command and General Staff College and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces.
In addition to 10 service and campaign medals, Sam received both the Bronze and Silver Stars for his action in World War II and a remarkable four Legion of Merit awards for outstanding duty performances during his military service.
Filled with energy and committed to action, Sam never “retired.” An engineer at heart, he would plan, tinker and create, spending long hours in his woodworking shop building family heirlooms. He quickly mastered the computer and relished his e-mail correspondence with friends and family. Long car trips with Margaret, frying donuts with his grandchildren, backyard July 4th celebrations, lunches with his West Point classmates and, most of all, the times he was surrounded by his children and grandchildren, brought Sam great happiness.
Preceded in death by his beloved son, Lance Michael, Sam is survived by his wife, Margaret, daughters Ann, Christine, Marcia, Karen, Melanie, Renee, Valerie and Charlene, as well as 31 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. His integrity, faithfulness, courage and responsibility set a wonderful example for the family he loved so deeply, and which, in turn, loved and respected him with equal measure.
Memorial service will be at 10:45 a.m. on Friday, 23 January, 2004, at the Ft. Myer Old Post Chapel, followed by burial with full honors in Arlington National Cemetery.
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Michael Robert Patterson was born in Arlington and is the son of a former officer of the US Army. So it was no wonder that sooner or later his interests drew him to American history and especially to American military history. Many of his articles can be found on renowned portals like the New York Times, Washingtonpost or Wikipedia.
Reviewed by: Michael Howard