Mr. William Samuel Baldwin, age 81, of Cadiz, Kentucky, passed away on Saturday, April 18, 2009.
Sam was born on August 27, 1927, in Benham, Kentucky to Mrs. Carrie Bell Romans Baldwin and Mr. Robert Earl Baldwin. He was the oldest of five boys and one girl.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his brothers, Robert Donelson Baldwin and Noland Yantis Baldwin.
Survivors include brothers John C. Baldwin of Hopkinsville, Kentucky and Alan Romans Baldwin of Morehead, Kentucky, and sister Nancy Carol Baldwin Jones of Cadiz, Kentucky. Also, his two daughters and their spouses, Helen Townsend Baldwin Martin and Don Martin and Mary Elizabeth Baldwin McGovern and Mike McGovern; his three grandchildren, Isabella Helena Alexander, Samuel Townsend Martin, and Michael Alexander McGovern; and his Jack Russell Terrier, Jack.
Sam graduated as the valedictorian of his class at Lancaster High School in 1945 and volunteered for the U.S. Navy later in the year. He trained at Camp Perry in Williamsburg, Virginia and was stationed at Moffett Field in San Francisco, California. In 1947, he entered Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond, Kentucky, where he graduated in 1950 with a degree in Business.
His agricultural work began with his morning chore of milking the family cow. But as legend has it, the cow was sold shortly after little Sam was seen riding it, rather than milking it. After his cowboy days, Sam worked as the General Manager of Baldwin Truck & Tractor Company from 1950 to 1963, when he took the position of Vice President of the West Kentucky Production Credit Association in Hopkinsville and Cadiz. After retiring, Sam worked harder than ever, continuing to give his time as a Rural Land Appraiser.
In 2008, Sam’s dedication to his community was recognized with a Distinguished Service Award given by the Hopkinsville-Christian County Chamber of Commerce and presented to him by Governor Steve Beshear of Kentucky. His sincere interest in helping the farming communities of Western Kentucky led him into the hearts and homes of many, and his commitment will not be forgotten.
The roles that he will be best remembered for are those of loving Father and Grandfather – building bonfires for marshmallow roasts, offering tractor rides through the woods and teaching his grandchildren how to cast a line. Sam spent much of his time building a home complete with his own fire-tower on his beloved Baldwin Hills, where his spirit will live on forever. Sam has been cherished by all who knew him as a friend to the farmer and the four-legged, a teller of tall tales and above all, a caring soul always ready to lend his hand to friends, family and even strangers.
The funeral ceremony will be held on Thursday, April 23, at 11 am at Goodwin Funeral Home, 138 Main Street, Cadiz, Kentucky, with Reverend Roger Newell officiating, burial to follow at the Kentucky Veterans’ Cemetery West, 5817 Fort Campbell Boulevard, Hopkinsville, Kentucky. The family will receive friends at the funeral home on Wednesday, April 22 from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm.
In lieu of flowers, donations may either be addressed to the Cadiz Rotary Club Youth and Senior Services and mailed to P.O. Box 713, Cadiz, Kentucky, 42211 or the Kentucky Department of Veterans’ Affairs Trust Fund and mailed to the Kentucky Veterans’ Cemetery West at 5817 Fort Campbell Boulevard, Hopkinsville, Kentucky, 42240
Following the burial, a celebration of Sam Baldwin’s life will be held at the James E. Bruce Convention Center, 303 Conference Center Drive, Hopkinsville, KY 42240. Refreshments will be served.