Sam Russell

It is with great sadness that Sterling College notes the passing of Sam Russell on August 8, 2014, from congestive heart failure. He was 87.

Sam was on the Board of Trustees for Sterling College for ten years. He was part of a Sterling family; his son went to Sterling College, and his wife was the Director of Admission. Sam was also the architect of the McCarthy Barn and its lead builder. He designed the project and led construction crews and Sterling students. He then went on to do the same with the Brown Library. Sam liked the empowerment of community members to raise the buildings.

Sam was born on a small farm in Massachusetts, where he learned self-sufficiency and how not to be intimidated by hands-on learning. He moved to Craftsbury Common with his family in 1989, where they built their own house, which is still standing. He thought Sterling College was a special place, for special students.

The family will be holding a memorial service for Sam’s good, long, rich life on the Sterling College campus sometime in October; more details will be announced as they become available.

Alumni and friends who wish to share memories of Sam may do so by commenting below.


From his daughter, Sarah Russell:

“Dear Friends and Family,

I want to thank you for all the condolences, warm memories, and nice notes, as well as the stories about my father (poignant, funny, surprising) shared with us in these last six months. At Sam’s memorial at Sterling College in October, Thad and I referenced my parents’ long and passionate commitment to Sterling. Please consider making a donation in my father’s name. Click on “make your gift online now” and it will provide a space to indicate that it is in Sam’s name.
Thanks and have a great December!
Sarah Russell”

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