Friday, September 1, 2017


Elmer Samuel “Sam” Fish died in his home on August 31, in Vinland, KS. He was 86 years old.
Sam is survived by his wife of 66 years, Sarah Lea, of the home. Children Ted (Julie) Fish of Fayetteville, AR; Roni (Bill) Visalli of Baldwin, KS; Tim (Cynthia) Fish of Wichita, KS; Lisa (Shawn) Smith of Vinland, KS; Julie (Jeff) Porter of Little River, KS; Jason (Traci) Fish of McPherson, KS; 24 grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren with one on the way. Siblings Melvin Fish of Bucoda, WA; and Louise Kelley of Davis City, IA. He was preceded in death by an infant daughter, Terri Fish, his parents Sherman and Bonnie, brother Keith Fish, sisters Kathleen McClellan and Lavaughn Waller.
Elmer Samuel “Sam” Fish
Sam was born May 30, 1931, in Hatfield, MO to Sherman Leland Fish and Bonnie Avis (Snipes) Fish. Sam graduated from Hatfield High School in 1951 and was married to the love of his life Sarah Lea Mathis on June 17, 1951. Sam joined the National Guard while in high school and served until 1952 when he suffered a knee injury. He was then drafted into the United States Army in 1953. He received training at Camp Carson, CO and Ft. Sill, OK, then was stationed at Ft. Hood, TX and Ft. Polk, LA. After his discharge from the Army in 1956, Sam moved the family back to Missouri to farm. In 1961 the family moved to Liberty, MO where Sam began work in the elevator industry. Sam retired from the International Union of Elevator Constructors in 1993 after more than 30 years of service. Despite a long and successful career as an elevator mechanic, Sam always considered himself to be a farmer at heart. In retirement, he enjoyed more than two decades of raising beef cattle and growing his own hay. It was the life he always wanted but could never afford while raising his family.
Sam’s hobbies involved growing and building. He cultivated large gardens to supply the family with an abundance of fresh vegetables all summer long with plenty left over for canning. He grew a wide variety of plants but especially loved homegrown sweet corn and tomatoes. He took pride in keeping his yard neat and trimmed and always had several flower beds full of colorful blooms. Sam was often found in his shop building or modifying some tool or implement for use on the farm. He also enjoyed making wind chimes and other gifts for family and friends. Sam also enjoyed watching sports on television. He was a big fan of Royals baseball, Chiefs football, and Jayhawk basketball.
Sam was a faithful Christian and served for many years as an elder in two congregations of the Lord’s church in Liberty, MO, and Eudora, KS. Sam will be remembered as a man of integrity who put the Lord and his family above all else.
Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. Monday, September 4, 2017, at Eudora Church of Christ, Eudora, KS. Burial at Vinland Cemetery, Vinland, KS, will follow services. The family will receive friends from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., Sunday, September 3, 2017, at the Lamb-Roberts Funeral Home, Baldwin City, KS.  Memorial contributions may be made to Douglas County Visiting Nurses sent c/o Lamb-Roberts Funeral Home, P.O. Box 64, Baldwin City, KS 66006.  Condolences to the family may be sent through

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