Took me a while to do this post, because I was just released from the hospital myself, the day Sam passed away and I got the news of his passing. It’s difficult for me to put my feelings about this into words or what to say about this man. If you know The Stuffed Sandwich in the City Of San Gabriel, you know Sam.
Sam was a mentor to me, he thought me everything about craft beers, the breweries, home brewing and especially Stone Brewing Co. I visited Sam and Marlene often, to talk, eat, drink, get talked shit to by Sam and learn more about everything Sam knew, well what he’d tell me. One of the most funny and knowledgeable people of beer I ever met. So many stories but not enough time to get to all them.
Sam and I always joked about our hospital stays, either he was going in and I was coming out or I was going in and he was going out. It was like clockwork, even though it was serious, he always had a smile or made a joke of it. I started blogging because of Sam and Marlene, Sam said “Do it, what else you going to do..sit here all day and bother me?” So I wrote my first blog about Stuffed Sandwich for Beers In Paradise, you can view it here: Stuffed Sandwich sadly, that was when Sam got really sick and couldn’t be there to do the interview. Sam was in and out of the hospital since then, his health was always up & down. I was lucky enough to see him a few times after that.
I knew Sam was sick, just didn’t expect this. I was in the hospital 12 days, very ill, and my family was told I wouldn’t make it. Somehow, that changed and I did make it. On January 8th, 2014 I was finally being released from the hospital, while waiting for my final meeting with my doctor, I got a text saying that Sam has passed away that morning. Now that took me down hard, I couldn’t believe it. Then my doc walks in and proceeds to tell me how lucky I was to be alive, nobody could have survived that, so somebody must be looking out for me. I was also told that my pancreas was in bad shape and could never have another alcohol beverage again. Man..what more do I need today.
So I sit here now, still trying to express my thoughts into words, but find it difficult because, Sam was a good friend to my kids, wife and I. My son loved going over just to make Sam mad, it was like two kids fighting all the time, plus my son loved that pastrami sandwich. I’d take my son out of school early, just to get a pastrami and hang out (sorry Cess). Yes, my wife is just finding this out, now. In fact I also found out, my older brother used to go there with my mom before I did.
I have so many stories, one day I’ll tell them all. For now, I send my condolences to Marlene and her family for their loss. Sam will be missed, but I know he’s in a better place now. Sam, may you Rest In Peace, you’ll never be forgotten and thank you for everything you thought me.
Here is info that was posted today about his services:
Dear Friends and Family,
By now most of you have heard – it’s amazing how fast the word spread.
It is with a very sad heart that I am announcing to the world that
Sam passed away at home surrounded by family January 8, 2014.
Thank you all for being so patient waiting to hear about the services.
There has been a huge hang-up due to the U.S. Government.
Sam was proud to have served his country.
Sam wanted to be buried at the National Cemetary in Riverside, Ca.
Sam served in the Army National Guard of California. In order to be buried
there his records have to be checked taking 48 to 72 hours (and of course
the weekend does not count). So, final word came down that he is not eligible
because his papers say ‘of California’. I have been told that there is sepration
of state and federal service. Sam fell into this category. It is a technicality in
the law. There are a few bills trying to get passed in the U.S. Congress right
now to change this.
So, I have done the next best that I could to honor his wishes. He will be buried in the
Veteran’s section of the Oakdale Memorial Park.
Here is all the information for Sam’s service.
I am holding a Viewing for all to come and see Sam one last time:
Sunday January 19, 2014
5:00pm to 8:00pm
Douglass & Zook Funeral Home
600 E. Foothill Blvd.
Monrovia, Ca. 91016
Graveside Funeral and Service:
Monday January 20, 2014
Oakdale Memorial Park Mortuary
1401 S. Grand Ave.
Glendora, Ca. 91740
We’ll be having a Celebration of Sam
with refreshments following the service at:
Matt Denny’s Ale House Restaurant
145 E. Huntington Drive
Arcadia, CA. 91006
Entrance and parking are in the rear of the building.
From Huntington – north on 1st street, east on Wheeler
public parking next to Arcadia Rental or continue on
Wheeler, right turn on Indiana and into another
public parking area. Look for the big tent for the gathering.
As grumpy as Sam liked to pretend he had a huge love for all
children, animals and nature.
In lieu of flowers, if you would like, you may make a donation to either
of the 2 organizations that Sam and I have supported for years:
Please be sure to mention ‘in honor’ or ‘in memory’ of Sam Samaniego
101 Montgomery Street, Suite 1700
San Francisco, California 94104
http://www.yosemiteconservancy.org (click on ‘support us’)
Greater Los Angeles chapter
1875 Century Park East suite 950
Los Angeles, Ca. 90067
With Love and Friendship,