Dana Sams

Obituary of Dana Garrett Sams

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Dana Garrett Sams – June 6, 1971 to July 23, 2023

Family, friends, fishing, curling, music, camping, time at the cottage, boating and the Blue Jays.  These were the things that made Dana happiest.  But those things were great because he could share them with those he loved, his wife of 27 years, Laurie Sams and their daughter Megan, of whom he was unabashedly proud.  The three of them shared a passion for Maritime folk music, and Megan became their favourite artist, as she grew in talent and experience. 

Those who were fortunate to have Dana in their lives had him fiercely and forever. He never did anything half-way, and he was a loyal friend. If you had a problem, he was there (but only by phone if he was fishing). If you had something to celebrate, he was there to raise a glass with you. If you wanted to hear fiddle music, or be front and center at a music festival, Dana was your guy. If you wanted to hear bad singing, Dana was also your guy, belting out “the best” karaoke version of Folsom Prison Blues you have ever heard. He was a pool shark, teacher, brew master and never forgot a face.

Dana made friends everywhere he went, from clients to curling opponents to fellow campers, fishermen and cottagers.  Those friendships meant a lot to him, and it was in the company of family and friends that Dana really lived.  He appreciated the social times after curling, around campfires in his backyard, or at the cottage or campground.  Summers were full of camping, music festivals, cottage weekends, and fishing. He especially loved his trips to the lovely Margaree River, where he had a rock-star experience with a well-known local guide and a television fishing show host in his last week. 

Dana was smart and intuitive and had a knack for understanding how things – and people – work.  After several years as Chief of University Security at St. Mary’s University during and after his undergraduate studies, he applied his ability to make connections with people and capacity for complex systems to his role as Sales Advisor with Northeast Equipment, building an expertise in the design and installation of specialized heating systems.  His contractor clients loved him for his depth of knowledge and straightforward manner. For the better part of the last decade, he was the Territory Manager for JBM Sales, representing a wide variety of industrial equipment brands, and building strong relationships with commercial clients throughout Atlantic Canada.

Dana also gave back to his community. He was VP and Director of the East Coast Offshore Technical Society (ECOTS) for several years, during which he and Laurie also ran the ECOTS Sunday Curling League.  Dana was a committee member for the Cape Breton Charitable Association, and always proud of his Cape Breton roots. 

Dana was born in Comox, BC, on June 6, 1971, and raised in Dartmouth by the late Alexander (Sandy) and Murial (Sam) Sams.  He passed suddenly on Sunday, July 23rd, after a typically busy day of project work at home.  In addition to Laurie, Megan, and Sam, he is survived by sister, Wanda; brother, Greg; and many cousins, nieces, and nephews. 

Dana had a lot of good things going on in his life – his family, a new job, plans for a new cottage on Lake Charlotte, and the projects he always had on the go.  It’s not making any sense right now that our fiercely loyal, fun-loving, smart, honest Dana is not going to be in our lives in the way he has been over his 52 years. What Dana leaves us is a great example of a family man with varied interests who shared what is good in life with those he loved.  We all have our favourite memories of Dana to hold close and keep his memory with us always.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Tourette Syndrome Foundation of Canada, Diabetes Canada, Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada, or Margaree Salmon Association

A Celebration of Life will be held at the Millstone Public House, 250 Baker Drive, on Sunday, July 30, 2023, between 2 pm and 6 pm.   All are welcome to drop by. Arrangements have been entrusted to Serenity Funeral Home, 34 Coldbrook Village Park Dr., Coldbrook, NS, B4R 1B9 (902-679-2822).

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