Born: May 2, 1991
Died: Oct. 22, 2013
Samantha Erin Sanchez graced us with her birth on May 2, 1991, and left a void in our hearts and lives on Oct. 22, 2013. She had many friends and family whom she loved and who loved her.
Sweet Samantha, such a gentle soul, so vibrant and so full of life. She embraced it with her friends and family. Spending precious moments and giving us more precious memories-her laughter, her smile, her baby talk "Nee, Nee, Nee, Nee." She loved her Little Boy and her Little Girl, the two kitties she had rescued, and her Yorkie, Little. We will keep them close and love them, Child.
Samantha's thoughts and actions, her plans for her future, her love of all living things-these are the things we will carry with us to preserve her memory. She loved football ("Da Bears"), engaging in conversations about issues in the world and traveling. She had been to Italy and Australia and wanted to travel the world. Samantha, I love the way you called me "Madre" and how you spoke, extending a word in your sweet voice, "Goooood." Sam loved candy, especially Skittles, enough to earn the nickname "Skittles."
Sam, our shining star, your light is not out but burning brightly and strongly within the hearts of those lives you touched and made better for having known you. When we laugh with our memories of you, there will be sadness as well, of the memories that will not be. Your "Turd," Aiden, your beloved nephew, will miss those times you held his hand, played with him at Monkey Joe's and watched movies with him. He will know that you are forever watching over him and guiding him as he grows older.
Your intelligence and insight to all things made you one of the smartest people most people knew. West Virginia University was home to you, and your professors talked about how engaging you were in the classroom. You would be so happy to know that WVU is honoring you with your degree, a bachelor's in economics. Your love of learning, from your first words, through your days filled with elementary, middle and high school – each year and every teacher touched you, made you yearn to learn more and understand the world around you. Scholarship was a big part of you, from walking around Applebee's doing complicated math problems in your head for fun to sharing your addiction struggles in your Aunt Heather's classroom.
We found your poetry-"Oh Child". Your words and feelings conveyed your love for me and your family, your struggles and demons with your addiction. We will make sure that the power and depth of your words will reach out to others who are struggling as you did. Even in your passing, you will continue to live through helping others who are in recovery.
As we journeyed to bring you home to us, we saw the peaceful spaces that you spent time in with your friends that gave you comfort and helped you feel safe for that moment. We felt close to you there and know that you were with us.
Samantha is survived by her mother, Erin Sanchez-Stevens; her step-mother, Apryl Sanchez-Stevens; her sister, Sydney Sanchez; her brother, Joseph C. Sanchez lll; her step-sister, Brittany Stevens-Finlayson; her step-brother, Devin Stevens-Gregor; her maternal grandmother, Adrienne Favale; her uncle Thomas C. Favale Jr. and Rochelle Favale; her aunt Jennifer (Favale) Polz and Laddie Polz; her uncle Paul Favale and Melodi Flashing; her aunt Heather Favale and Stacey Fowler; her aunt Elizabeth (Favale) Guo and Qian Quo; her aunt Beatrice (Sanchez) Collins and Kevin Collins; her uncle Mike Sanchez; her aunt Patti Sanchez; her uncle Jerry Sanchez and Donna Sanchez; her uncle David Sanchez; her nephew Aiden Sanchez-Hinz; her boyfriend Daniel Tucker; many cousins and even more friends, especially your "Apple Buddies."
Samantha was preceded in death by her father, Joseph C. Sanchez Jr.; her maternal grandfather, Thomas C. Favale Sr.; her paternal grandparents, Benita and Joe Sanchez Sr.; her paternal aunt, Linda Sanchez; and her paternal uncle, Henry Sanchez.
Memorial services will be from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 2, at Hotel Baker, St. Charles. Any donations in Sam's memory we ask that you donate to an animal no-kill shelter of your choice.