COOK Samuel S. November 13, 1943 August 6, 2019 Samuel S. Cook, 75, of Rocky Mount, Va., beloved husband, brother, father, and educator went to be with the Lord on Tuesday, August 6, 2019. Born in Snow Creek, Va. on November 13, 1943, Sam was literally larger than life. At 6'10" he was probably asked "how tall are you," more than a million times. His favorite answer of "5' 22"" revealed the good natured sense of humor by which he approached life. Although he was tall in stature, it was his kindness, humility, and gentleness that made him a giant among men. An undergraduate of Virginia Tech, Sam also earned a Master's of Education from UVA and had finished all course work towards a Ph.D. Sam served the children of the state of Virginia as a respected educator for 42 years. He began his career as a teacher at Lord Botetourt High School, before becoming a principal at Northampton High School on the Eastern Shore. He then served as the principal at New Castle High School in Craig County, and the Director of Jackson River Vocational Center in Alleghany County. He transitioned into administration in the Alleghany Highlands school system before becoming the Superintendent of Warren County. The culmination of Sam's career was his 12 years as the Superintendent of Galax City Schools. After retirement, he served as a member of the Patrick Henry Community College Advisory Board. Sam truly treasured the lifelong friendships he made in education as well as the positive impacts he made in the lives of thousands of students. Sam enjoyed retirement and enjoyed traveling with the love of his life, Ruth. He loved spending time with his grandchildren and family. He enjoyed planting a garden and supervising Ruth's work in the garden. He spent many hour working in his building known as Grandpa's workshop. Late in life, he developed a love for wood turning and wood working which finally enabled him to express his artistic nature. A lifelong Christian, Sam experienced the fellowship of many churches and especially enjoyed the friendship of the Highland United Methodist in Callaway. Since moving to Rocky Mount, Sam and Ruth have been members of the Rocky Mount United Methodist Church where Sam enjoyed the opportunity to participate in community service. Additionally, Sam was especially proud of being a Master Mason with more than 50 years of membership in the Snow Creek Lodge. Sam was preceded in death by his parents, Samuel L. and Dollie Cook of Snow Creek, Va. Those left to share the memory of his life, are his loving wife of 53 years Ruth (Craddock) Cook who was by his side when he passed, his sister and her husband, Mary and Bob Davis of Rochester Hills, Mich., his sons, Samuel C. Cook and wife Sonya Mooneyham of Stafford, Va., and Matthew Cook and wife Andrea Franco-Cook of Charleston, W.Va., grandchildren, Maeve Cook, Claire Cook, Matthew Ridge Cook, Vincent Espinoza and Andres Espinoza, and nephews Mike Davis and Terry Davis, along with a host of special cousins, nephews, and friends. The family is especially grateful for the kindness displayed by all who helped Sam over the last year of his illness, especially Joe Marst, Johnny Smith, and Jack and Betty Dillon. The love and kindness displayed by Sam's neighbors and friends who selflessly helped Sam and Ruth will always be remembered by the family. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Sam Cook Scholarship at the Galax Foundation for Excellence in Education, P.O. Box 487 Galax VA 24333. Funeral services will be conducted from Flora Funeral Chapel 2 p.m. Saturday, August 10, 2019 with the Rev. Will Waller officiating. Interment will be private at Mountain View Memorial Park. His family will receive friends 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, August 9, 2019 at Flora Funeral Service and Cremation Center, Rocky Mount.

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My deep condolences to the family. Sam was my vo-ag teacher his first two years of teaching at Lord Botetourt. I think I can speak for all my classmates in saying we enjoyed him both as a teacher and friend. I was fortunate to see and visit with him several times in later years as he served as a superintendent and I served on the Botetourt school board. Michael Beahm

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