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Sam Abezetian, Age 87, longtime Park Ridge resident, at peace September 20. Devoted husband of the late Jo Carol (nee Coleman); Beloved father of Carol (Dave) Denlinger and Dan (Deneen); Cherished grandfather of Abbey, Kristie, Jake and Jessie and dearest friend of Pat Papas. Fond uncle, great uncle and dear friend to so many. He was predeceased by his parents, Noyemi and Jacob and his brother and sister-in-law, Marty and Zabelle.
Sam was born in Chicago and grew up in Logan Square, a first generation American-born son of Armenian immigrant parents, Noyemi and Hagoop (Jacob) Abezetian; He affectionately looked up to his older brother of 7 years, Marty. He graduated in 1953 from Schurz High School, where he met the love of his life, Jo Carol and they were married in 1958. Sam and JoCarol shared a wonderful marriage of over 50 years, raising two children and four grandchildren whom they loved beyond measure. They played golf and cards together and had many loyal, fun, true-blue friends throughout the years. Member and avid golfer at Park Ridge Country Club for over 40 years and Jacaranda West Golf Club, Venice, FL.
While still a senior in high school, Sam attended Chicago College of Commerce on the road to completing training to become a Certified Court Reporter. In his over 67 years of experience in all aspects of reporting, Sam worked his way up from Staff to Senior Court Reporter to President, CEO and part owner of Leon M Golding & Associates. When they sold the business, “retirement” for Sam meant that he continued to work (when not golfing here or in Florida) as an independent contractor and then Consultant for the last 15+years with Veritext Legal Solutions supervising the work for the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD) – an organization that he has had a relationship with for most of his career.
In 1957, Sam enlisted in the US Air Force/ Air Force Reserves with his childhood friend and best buddy, LeRoy, serving for two years and then reactivated during the Cuban Missile conflict.
Sam was an active member of the Park Ridge community, serving as a coach and director for Park Ridge Falcon football, a board member at the Park Ridge County Club for many years and supportive fan for his children and nephews in any and all sports played.
As a lifelong Cub fan, he recounted great memories of his older brother Marty dragging him on the streetcar to the games and enjoying kufta sandwiches in the bleachers. All this honing their skills of patience, perseverance and juggling disappointment, culminating in finally being able to celebrate the World Series win in 2016.
In later years, he enjoyed cooking (especially making outstanding hummus, taboule and “restaurant-quality” salmon in the airfryer.) and travel. Sam was able to fulfill his desire to travel, doing so with his dearest friend, Pat. The highlight for him was their life-changing trip to Armenia, where he proudly connected with his history and had the privilege of having an audience with the highest holy man in the Armenian Church (Catholicos of all Armenians).
Sam was a self-proclaimed “maven” – Sharing his little bit of knowledge on just about every topic. And sharing he did… He coined the phrase, “I wrote the book, but nobody seems to want to read it!” He was the ultimate people person, always encouraging others, making them feel special and finding connections with everyone.
Even those that have had brief encounters with Sam will feel the loss of this light of a man, but none more so than his family and friends who he fiercely loved and cared for.
Visitation Monday, September 26, 4:00-8:00 p.m., Wake Service 7:30 p.m. at Ryan-Parke Funeral Home, 120 S. Northwest Hwy., Park Ridge. Funeral Service Tuesday, September 27, 10:30 a.m., at St. Gregory the Illuminator Armenian Church, 6700 W. Diversey Ave., Chicago. Interment Town of Maine Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials appreciated to St. Gregory the Illuminator Armenian Church, Avenues to Independence (avenuestoindependence.org) or Fund for Armenian Relief (farusa.org).
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