In Memory of Samuel "Sam" O. Sears
Died: August 22, 2021
Samuel “Sam” O. Sears, Jr., age 83, of Ida Grove, Iowa, passed away on Sunday, August 22, 2021, at his residence of Ida Grove, Iowa, after a long but courageous battle with cystic kidney disease.
A Funeral Service will be held at 2:00 p.m., Friday, August 27, 2021, at the St. Paul Lutheran Church of Ida Grove, Iowa. Rev. Richard A. Salcido will officiate. A Visitation will be held two-hours prior from 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m., on Friday, August 27, 2021, at the St. Paul Lutheran Church of Ida Grove, Iowa. Military Rites will be conducted by the McNamara-Moore Post No. 61 of the American Legion of Ida Grove, Iowa. Committal Services will follow in the Schaller Cemetery of Schaller, Iowa.
The Christensen-Van Houten Funeral Home of Ida Grove, Iowa, is in charge of the funeral arrangements. Condolences may be sent online at www.christensenvanhouten.com
Samuel O. Sears, Jr., age 83, of Ida Grove, Iowa, passed away on August 22, 2021, at his residence of Ida Grove after a long but courageous battle with cystic kidney disease.
Born December 15, 1937, in New York City (Harlem Hospital), Samuel Oliver Sears, Jr., was the son of Samuel O. Sears, Sr. and Gladys (Taylor) Sears. He was baptized and confirmed in the Christian faith at the Resurrection Catholic Church of Harlem, New York. Sam grew up in New York City until the age of 14 and relocated to Norfolk, Virginia, where he lived with relatives. He graduated from Norfolk’s Booker T. Washington High School in June of 1955 at the age of 17. In September 1955 he enlisted into the U.S. Air Force.
On June 15, 1957, Sam, as he preferred to be called, married Irene Crocker in Norfolk. The couple were blessed with four children: Darrell (who died at childbirth), Avonda, Terence, and Beverly.
Sam served 20 years in the United States Air Force as a Public Information Specialist, journalist and magazine/newspaper editor, historian, and photographer; Armed forces radio and television service station manager and Project Blue Book (USAF UFO Project) manager. His career took him to 23 countries and every state in the U.S. except for the New England states. He served in Vietnam in combat news and was awarded the Bronze Star for meritorious service. He retired in November of 1975 as a Senior Master Sergeant from Strategic Air Command in Omaha, NE.
He returned to Rapid City, South Dakota, where he was stationed twice, and went to work at KOTA-TV as their photo-lab manager, processing film for the news and advertising departments. He also operated cameras for noon and nightly news broadcasts, was a news and advertising photographer, and produced on-site news and community TV specials. When the station transitioned to video tape, he was the sole operator of its new video equipment and trained news personnel after attending a Kodak Film School in Denver. He attended the University of Nebraska in Omaha while in the service and the National College of Business after retirement, graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration.
In May of 1980 Sam moved to Colorado Springs, Colorado, to become an Army civilian employee and assistant editor of the Fort Carson Mountaineer newspaper. He later became the editor, taking the paper to the best in its class in the Army in 1986 and runner-up in the Department of Defense worldwide. He resigned from his Army position in 1992 and worked in the Colorado Springs Public Affairs Office and media relations supervisor and Public Relations liaison for the fire, gas and electric departments.
On July 4, 1981, Sam married Ann (Lichtenberg) Diekmann in Colorado Springs and with this union, Sam expanded his family by one daughter, Brandi. He also has 9 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren. Sam and Ann moved to Arthur, Iowa, in 1995. He retired in 1998 from Green Thumb, Inc., a Des Moines-based corporation that assisted dislocated workers and seniors to prepare for employment.
Sam and Ann celebrated 40 years of marriage on July 4, 2021. They both loved to travel, especially to Yuma, Arizona, for the winter. He enjoyed playing cards and games with family and friends, playing golf and was an avid Denver Broncos fan. He was an active member of McNamara-Moore Post No. 61 of the Ida Grove American Legion. Sam was a life member of the American Legion, Disabled American Veterans, Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Retired Enlisted Association. He was a faithful member of the St. Paul Lutheran Church of Ida Grove and an associate member of the Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church of Yuma. He was confirmed in the LCMS Lutheran faith in 1985 in Hawaii.
Left to cherish his memory are his loving wife of 40 years, Ann Sears; sisters Dolores Horton and Iris Moore; son Terence (Winsome) Sears; daughters Avonda (Elmon) Oliver, Beverly (Alex) Yarborough, and bonus daughter Brandi Crawford; nine grandchildren and five great-grandchildren; numerous nieces, nephews, extended family and friends.
Sam was preceded in death by his parents Gladys and Samuel Sears, Sr.; son Darrell (in infancy); granddaughter DeJon Williams; great-granddaughters Victoria and Faith Williams; and brother Ronald Sears, Sr.
2:00 p.m., Friday,
August 27, 2021
St. Paul Lutheran Church
Ida Grove, Iowa
Rev. Richard A. Salcido
Two-Hours Prior to the Service
12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m., Friday,
August 27, 2021
St. Paul Lutheran Church
Ida Grove, Iowa
"Amazing Grace, My Chains Are Gone" ~ solo
"The Lord's Prayer"
"On Eagle's Wings"
Sue Salcido, Organist
Journey Iversen, Vocalist
My sincere condolences to you and family Aunt Ann, I will always remember the time spent with you and Uncle Jr. JUNE 20, 2015 at SEARS Family Reunion. The best gift we can give each other is the gift of TIME, you gave your best “LOVE” …stay encouraged in the LORD, GOD is with you always LOVE, Jeanette Moore”
May you be at peace with your new endeavor in Heaven. You have done more in your life than many can imagine. I'm so proud to have you as my uncle. May you meet up with Gramna, and Uncle Ronald in Heaven.
May your beautiful soul sleep in Peace.
Love you always.