Mr. Samuel Adam Alexander, 79, passed away Thursday, June 11, 2020, in Exmore, surrounded by his loving family and friends. Sam was born May 15, 1941, in Tallulah, La., and attended Louisiana Tech where he received a BS and MS in botany.
He served in the Army during the Vietnam War and received the Vietnam Service Medal with two Bronze Service Stars. He continued his education earning his Ph.D. in plant pathology at Virginia Tech, where he met his wife, Connie. They initially raised their three children in Christiansburg, Va., where he was a professor at Virginia Tech doing research to improve Christmas tree health and production.
His dedication to and knowledge of forest ecosystems led him then to the EPA and U.S. Forest Service in North Carolina where he developed and headed a National Forest Health Monitoring program. This program made significant and lasting contributions to the ways regional and national environmental monitoring is performed. He then relocated to the Eastern Shore of Virginia where he continued his professorship doing research and teaching graduate students at the Virginia Tech Eastern Shore Agricultural Research and Extension Center for the remainder of his career.
After retiring, Sam dedicated his time to his children and grandchildren, while continuing his love of music by playing the trumpet and recording music with his brother. He also enjoyed shooting sporting clays and bird hunting with his close group of shooting buddies.
Sam will be loved and missed by his wife, Connie; his brother, Ron; his sister, Pam; his children, Adam Alexander (Gretchen), Scott Alexander (Heather), and Amy Alexander-Husband (Mark); and his six grandchildren, Madox, Brycen, Abigail, Beckett, Crosby, and Graeme.
A celebration of Sam’s life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the Arbor Day Foundation or Penny Pines Plantation to continue Sam’s work preserving our nation’s forests and ecosystems.