Effingham Daily News
---- — Harold Sams, 88, of Shumway (formerly of Madison, Ind.) left this earthly world to be with Jesus Christ, Our Lord and Savior at 9:57 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 24, 2013, at his home surrounded by his family.
Masonic rites conducted by Greenland Lodge 665 will be held at 11 a.m. with funeral services immediately following Wednesday, at First Presbyterian Church, Effingham, with the Rev. Drew Holloway officiating. Burial will be in Arborcrest Memorial Park, Effingham, with military rites. Visitation will be from 10 to 11 a.m. Wednesday prior to the services at the church. Services are in the care of Johnson Funeral Home, Effingham. Memorials may be made to Central Illinois Honor Flight, 712 East Jefferson, Effingham, IL 62401 or Effingham American Legion 120. Online condolences may be left at www.johnsonandsonsfh.com. The family would like to thank you for the cards, well-wishes, thoughts and prayers during his final days on earth.
Harold was born on Feb. 8, 1925, in Paint Lick, Ky., (Madison County) to Robert H. and Sallie (Bolton) Sams. He had two siblings, Pauline Hensler and Geneva Cook. Harold served in the Army Air Corps from Jan. 15, 1944, through May 10, 1946, during World War II, as a radar technician for the 15th Air Force. Harold was stationed in the following locations while enlisted: Madison, Wis.; Miami Beach, Fla.; Greensboro, N.C.; Clovis, N.M.; and Fort Pratt, Kan. Harold traveled by train to each destination.
Harold graduated from Hanover High School, Hanover, Ind., in 1947, where he also met and later married the love of his life, Mary Lou Wells. They married on May 9, 1949, in Madison, Ind., and later had four children, Leslie, Donna, Alan and Dan. Harold was employed for the Pennsylvania, Penn Central and later the Conrail Railroad as a Signal-Maintainer from 1949 until 1985, when he retired. He belonged to the Brotherhood of Railroad Signalman.
Harold was a 50-plus year, 32nd degree Master Mason and a member of Greenland Masonic Lodge 665 in Beecher City. He was a deacon and active member of the First Presbyterian Church in Effingham. Harold enjoyed spending time tending to his fruit trees, planting his large garden each year, fishing and flying his radio-controlled air planes with the RC Flyers Club. Harold was also an active member in his community volunteering time at Effingham County FISH organization, and devoting time to a group focused on restocking bass fish into Lake Sara. He also enjoyed spending time with his coffee buddies.
Harold is survived by his wife of 64 years, Mary Lou Sams of Effingham; children, Leslie Sams, Donna Kutcher and Dan (Margie) Sams, all of Effingham; sister, Pauline Hensler of Hanover, Ind.; second cousin, Elizabeth “Sis” Fothergill of Lexington, Ky.; grandchildren, Christine (Patrick) Edwards of Mattoon, Bryan Hoff of Boulder, Colo., Rachel Hoff, Ben (Stephanie) Sams and Robert (Tiffany) Sams, all of Effingham, Neil Sams of Atlanta, Jake Kutcher of Las Vegas, and Jayme (Ross) Martin of Dieterich; and great-grandchildren, Sydney Edwards, Ian French, Tenley Sams, Beckett Sams, Garrett Wilson , Chase Martin and Madeline Martin; along with many loved ones and close friends of the family.
Harold was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Geneva Cook; son, Alan Sams; daughter-in-law, Pam Sams; brothers-in-law, Charles Hensler and Kenny Cook; and great-great-nephew, Brok Hensler.
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