Posted by Al Anile

Above are Bob Samson and his wife Pam
It’s hard to believe that our fellow member Bob Samson is no longer with us. As most of you know (or should know) from past club communication, Bob died suddenly at his home last week on June 13, and his funeral was on the 16th.
It is sad that one has to die first before you really know who he/she really was. I was not able to go to Bob's wake on the 15th, so I decided to go to his funeral mass on the 16th. I arrived at Haben Funeral Home around 9:00 in the morning.  After paying my respect, I took a look around the room and was amazed to see so many pictures of Bob, hundreds of them.  I saw pictures of Bob when he was much younger and could not believe it was him! The photograph above really caught my eye, so I took a picture of it with my smartphone. 
After speaking with John Haben I learned that Bob's wish was to be cremated, so it was a very easy funeral procession, which consisted of walking across the street to St. Peter Church, celebrating the mass and walking back to the funeral home. The only other person from our club I saw there was Neil King, who is always fun talking to, so we sat together in the chapel for a while, and around 9:30 a. m. we all walked across the street to St. Peter Church.
Both Neil and I were very glad we did go to the church, because there we got to know who Bob was. First, the mass celebrant spoke about Bob, and although he did not know him, it was very nice to hear what he had to say. But when we really got to know about Bob was when one of his six brothers spoke about him; people were laughing and crying at the same time. Something we did not expect was when Bob's wife Pamela walked to the pulpit to talk about him. Honestly I have no idea how she was able to carry that trough, but she did, and at the end of her eulogy, I don't think there was a dry eye in the church.  It was really a moving experience.
As most of us know, Bob was a little rough around the edges, but what I learned after listening to his family, is that deep down he was a good man; always willing to give a helping hand to those who needed it. A good example of that is all the years he took care of the Just a Harvest Soup Kitchen, (sponsored by the Skokie Valley Rotary Club every three months) for so many years, of which I am very proud of having served at his side many times.
I think that in our own ways we will all miss our old friend Bob