Stationed: U.S. Naval destroyer, the Robert K. Huntington (DD 781)
Duties: sonar, locate enemy submarines
Married to Mariann Worosz in 1971
Father to Sara and Christopher
Grandfather to Nia Ciru.
Albert Sam, a tin can sailor! He was stationed on a destroyer, a fast maneuverable yet long endurance war ship intended to escort larger vessels in a fleet convoy or naval group and defend them against smaller short range power attackers; an extremely cramped place to live.
The Robert K. Huntington (DD 781) was laid down Feb. 29, 1944, in Seattle, Wash. It was built to destroy the fast building Japanese task force along the Japanese coast. She was one of the destroyers who escorted the USS Missouri (BB 63) into Tokyo Bay to sign the peace agreement between Japan and all allied forces. On her return, she brought back over 100 Marines who participated in the fierce island fighting.
Albert grew up in Dunkirk. He graduated from Dunkirk High School in 1968. He attended Bryant and Stratton College in Buffalo before joining the Naval Reserves in Dunkirk. Albert worked at True Temper as a laborer while attending monthly reserve meetings. In the fall of 1970, Albert left for boot camp in the Great Lakes.
While in boot camp, he was given the duty of platoon leader. He took basic electricity and completed all the courses assigned at fleet sonar school, pictured below, in Key West, Fla. In the 1970s, Albert met up with the USS Robert K. Huntington (DD 781) on its return from Vietnam. Albert's duties were to locate enemy submarines. The Huntington was then designated as the training destroyer for the North Atlantic Division.
The rest of Albert's tour would be with his ship, now anchored in New Jersey. Albert's duties, now when the ship went out to sea, was to locate submarines and train our sailors of tomorrow.
With the Vietnam War winding down and the downsizing of the military, Albert was given an early release from active duty on Aug. 28, 1971. He continued reserve meetings for the next three years. Albert received his honorable discharge in November 1975.
Albert went to work for True Temper, working in many departments and eventually being promoted to a foreman in the forge department in 1979. He took employment with Roblin Steel and eventually was promoted to general foreman on the furnaces.
Wanting to be his own boss, Albert and his wife Mariann decided to have their own business. In 1983, he moved to Westfield and bought his first mobile home park, the first of three.
He also started a manufactured and modular home dealership employing 18 people.
With Albert's love for our area and believing in giving back to the community, he, along with six other local people, started a not-for-profit corporation in 1998. The group went on to build a recreation complex with three soccer fields, two basketball courts, a baseball diamond and two sand volleyball courts.
Its name is Northlake Family Recreation Center in Westfield. In appreciation of the 16 acres donated by Albert the park was named after him.
Albert Sam, a veteran like most veterans. A man who cares. He cares about family; he cares about country; and he cares about people. Albert Sam, our local hero.