Obediah Sample, Jr.

March 12, 2024
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Obediah Sample, Jr. Obituary

Obediah Sample, Jr to many he was known as “Obie, or Sonny”, 84 years old of Harborton, Virginia, passed away on Tuesday, March 12th, 2024, at Sentara Heart Hospital in Norfolk, Virginia.  He was born on June 15, 1939, the son of Obediah Sample, Sr. and Emily Parker Sample.

Obediah attended Accomack Public School and worked for Royal Crown (RC) Cola before joining Nandua Seafood Company (Crab Industry).  Obediah worked at Nandua Seafood for over 60 years.  Obediah served as plant manager, employed by previous owners Charlie and Allen Pruitt, John T. (Jack) Hutchinson, and final owners Clinton Pitts Jr. and Frankie Bennett.  Nandua was not only a place of business, but it was also employment and a way to fellowship with other members of the community. Nandua Seafood was featured in several news articles and videos.  Videos filmed in 2011 and 2018 provided insight into Nandua Seafood and the seafood industry.  The videos were published in VisitorsTVNetwork and DelmarvaNow.  He was also featured in the Eastern Shore Essential Magazine 2023-2024 Edition as “A Local Legend”, written by Betty Martin and published by the Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce. The artist,  Ms. Whyte captured his image and painted his portrait; Atkinson Photography portrayed him on the cover of Virginia Living Magazine, he was "the first person of color” to grace the cover of this magazine - August 2014.  He was truly knowledgeable about crabs from Chesapeake Bay, he was well known to the watermen from the Eastern Shore, Crisfield, Maryland, Tangier Island, Virginia to water lines between Maine and the Carolinas.  

He started his Christian walk at an early age while living with his grandparents William and Emma Parker of Savageville. On his Christian journey he took on many leadership roles in the Church as a Deacon, Trustee, and Servant for Mt Olive Baptist Church and Later New Mt. Olive Baptist Church, where his son Scott Sample currently serves as the Pastor. His faith never wavered, he shared his love of the Lord, by offering prayer and encouragement to his family, community, and people that he encountered. His kind words and song will be everlasting on their hearts and mind “All Things Are Possible.”

He was preceded in death by his parents, his stepmother Willie Mae Sample, his loving and caring wife; Marian E. Sample who he was married to for 64 Years, his son Maurice Sample, sisters Emma Pitts and Lula Bailey, brothers William Sample, Irvin Sample, George Albert Washington, Charles Washington, Donald Washington, and James Sample. Daughter In laws, Annette Simpkins Sample, Karen Parker Sample, and Carolyn Beckett Sample, and Son-in law Thomas L. Smith.

Obediah leaves to cherish his memories;  his loving children, two daughters Donna Sample Smith, and Greta Sample, two sons Darrell Sample, Woodbridge, VA, Pastor Scott  Sample (Lasonya) , four brothers, Thomas Washington, Joe Sample (Rosemary), David Washington, Carl Washington, six sisters; Vanessa Bailey, Alberta Hamilton- Hodges, Rochelle Hamilton, Edith  Hack (Jerome), Jacqueline Borden (Robert), and Wilhelmenia Parker, other brothers in laws; Dory Sample, Jr (JeNette) and Dorice Sample, Sr. (Edmonia), other sister in laws, Terry Sample, Nellie Harmon Sample, and Teressa Sample, daughter-in-law Rouchelle Ayres Sample. Eight grandchildren that knew him as the “Patriarch”, “Granddaddy Obediah”, “Pops” and “Pop -Pop”; Natalie Sample-Williams (Paul), Demont Smith, Candice Smalley (Kahleef), Shawn Sample, Sharnetta Sample-Taylor (Vandell), Darrell O’Ryan Sample; Setina Anthony (Stephen) and Kwame Sample (Yazmeen).          

Obediah also leaves behind his special grandson, Kwame, who he and Marian raised.  Obediah thought highly of Kwame, Obediah would always have Kwame at the “crab house” working with him at a young age.  If the two weren’t bonding at the crab house, they either would be home mowing the yard or at McDonalds getting a milkshake.  When Marian passed, Kwame and Obediah began to share even more time together.  Once Kwame’s daughter, Koko, was born in October 2020, Obediah would always facetime with Koko before she went to bed.  Often on weekends, Obediah would have special requests that Kwame bring Koko over to see him, and Kwame did just that.  Obediah and Kwame had a grandfather-grandson relationship like no other. 

Additionally, Obediah leaves behind 13 great grandchildren and 2 great-great grandchildren, 4 Step Grand Children, Lamont Beckett. Rachel Gillis (Wendell), Norman Malone (Janya) and Laniya Malone, and 2 step great grandchildren and a host of nieces, nephews, and friends.

He always had a unique way of showing them love, song and prayer. Sit down servant and rest a little while!

**In Lieu of Flowers donations can be made to the Eastern Shore Area Agency on Aging Community Action Agency. "Area Plan "**

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March 22, 2024

5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
New Mt. Olive Baptist Church
13444 Hacksneck Rd.
Painter, VA 23420

Funeral Service
March 23, 2024

12:00 PM
Annointed Word of Deliverance COGIC
32170 Seaside Rd.
Keller, VA 23401


Shiloh Baptist Church Cemetery
31559 Boston Rd.
Painter, VA 23420


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