Wayne Martin Samson

GLADSTONE — Wayne Martin Samson, age 81, of Gladstone passed away on Monday, May 29, 2023 at OSF St. Francis Hospital following a brief illness.

Wayne was born January 23, 1942 in Ashland, Kentucky, the son of Smith and Irma (Proehl) Samson. He graduated from Ashland High School in 1960. He received a bachelor of science degree in business from Eastern Kentucky University in 1966.

In his early years, Wayne worked at the A&P Food Stores in Ashland and delivered papers to 150 morning customers for the Herald-Dispatch of Huntington, West Virginia. Following college he worked for the State of Kentucky as an income tax examiner, as a transportation officer, and as a Social Security disability determiner. Wayne had a passion for sales with extensive sales experience as a salesman and sales manager for over 20 years. He sold industrial tools and supplies serving the mining and manufacturing industries covering 34 counties of Kentucky and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

He was an avid reader of Kentucky and Civil War history. He enjoyed classic country and hillbilly music. After the Sunday morning country music radio program, he listened to the Bethany Lutheran Church service. Wayne’s first interest in cars started in his childhood from his experience of building and racing soapbox derby cars. Wayne was the 1956 soapbox champion. He was knowledgeable of vintage automobiles, trucks, and tractors. He preferred the old instead of the modern.

He was a hard worker, mechanically inclined and enjoyed welding, auto repair and using his tractors. He had a tender heart for dogs, especially his Labrador and Rottweiler. He loved sharing his stories of the experiences and of the people he met in the coal mining areas of Kentucky. He was an undisciplined collector of cars, trucks, tractors, and a large variety of items; and he enjoyed bargaining!

Wayne is survived by his children, John (Julia) Samson, David (Kristen) Samson and Christina (T.J.) Zakowski of Lexington, Kentucky; grandchildren, Thomas, Grace and Charlie Zakowski; sister, Dolores Samson of Rapid River; brother, Dan Samson of Escanaba and numerous cousins, nephews, and one niece.

He was preceded in death by his parents and his sister Lois.

The family will receive friends on Sunday, June 4 from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Skradski Funeral Home in Gladstone. Funeral services will be at 4 p.m. with Pastor Lily Brondyke officiating. Wayne will be laid to rest in the Rapid River Cemetery following the funeral service.

For additional information or to leave the family a message of condolence, go to Skradski Family Funeral Homes.com