Samuel Lassiter Byrd, Jr.

Samuel Lassiter Byrd, Jr.

Carrollton, VA
07.04.1939 - 01.11.2018
Served in the
Air Force

Today god walked this earth and selected a steadfast pillar for his kingdom.  On Jan 11, 2018 at approximately 0940 in the morning Samuel Lassiter Byrd Jr. received his final call for duty in the gardens of heaven.  He leaves behind his wife Kay Byrd the “love of his life” for 36 years, son Samuel Jay Byrd and his wife Rose Marie Byrd, daughters Deena Lynn Cordero and husband Tony Cordero, Karen Patricia Ward and her husband Ryan Ward, step-son Frederick Henry Bew Jr., step-daughter Kathy Bew Jones.   Sam also leaves behind 9 grandchildren, Abigail Elizabeth Timmons and husband Jeff, Korrine Alline Johnson and husband Mike, Haili Jean Bennett and husband Joshua, Sarah D. Nicholas and husband Devin, Greg Williams, Danielle Cordero, Katrina B. Mclane and husband Josh, Jasmine R. Ward and the “apple of his eye” Oscar Dennis Jones.  Additionally, he left behind 8 great grandchildren, Liam J. Timmons, Lillian A. Johnson, Branson Johnson, Paislee P. Bennett, Brantley J. Bennett, Abel James Mclane,  Krista Nicholas and Carson Nicholas. 

Sam or Sonny was the oldest of 6 children of Samuel Lassiter Byrd Sr. and Eudora Maebelle Ward Byrd of Suffolk.  He is survived by a brother Gerald H. Byrd, sisters Nancy Victoria Byrd Wiggins, Pamela Jean Byrd Groves and is preceded in death by sister Judith Paige Byrd Wiggins and brother James Douglas Byrd.

Sam’s life journey started out meager in the city of Suffolk.  He carried groceries in his bicycle basket for Daily’s Supermarket and worked at Leggett’s Seafood before joining the National Guard and United States Air Force. He was Chief of Security at Obici Memorial and Chippingham Hospital and finally culminated as Risk Manager for Sentara Leigh and Bayside Memorial Hospitals.  His 24-year career in the United States Air Force took him around the world to include Alaska and Greenland and many states within the USA.  The formula to his successes in life can be attributed to his strong character, compassion, determination, pride, attention to detail and selflessness.  These attributes earned him numerous accolades, awards, positions, and promotions in his military career to include being named Air Force Recruiter of the Year, twice, as well as numerous medals for outstanding performance. His subordinates honored him as a leader by saying he was hard but fair. This statement would prove true throughout his life.

Sam then took this skill set into the civilian sector.  Here he continued to excel as a leader among leaders in his local community.  His flawless performance and vast knowledge of litigation processes earned him a stellar career as Risk Manager at Sentara Leigh and Bayside Memorial where he garnered the admiration of his corporate office and peers.

Upon retiring Sam focused on traveling, fishing, gardening and spending time with his family at the beach.  His joy for reading throughout his lifetime led him to complete over 1000+ books.  This could be one of the major contributors to him being so well versed and knowledgeable on so many topics.  He passed on this love to his grandson “apple of his eye” Oscar in hopes that he would continue to expand his knowledge and share his life’s successes.

Sam has touched so many lives in his lifetime.  His innate ability to pass on his strong morals, above reproach character, determination, resolve, compassion, and selflessness has earned him a special spot in god’s kingdom.  With heavy hearts and boundless emptiness, we relinquish Sam to your care.  Accept this selfless servant, loving and devoted husband, father, grandfather, friend, and community pillar into your kingdom with open arms.  We hold his memories in our hearts. His life lessons and values will continue to live on through us all.  It’s time to Lay down your working tools, rest easy, Sam, Pop, Poppa, Daddy, brother, granddaddy, great granddaddy and friend your time on earth is done.  Until we meet again so long!

A funeral service will be conducted on January 18, 2018 at 11 AM in Trinity United Methodist Church, 201 Cedar Street, Smithfield VA 23430. The family will receive friends 1 hour prior at the church.  Burial with military honors will follow at Albert G. Horton Jr. Memorial Veterans Cemetery. A gathering for friends and family will be held at the home of Tony and Deena Cordero 1004 Pitchkettle Farm Lane Suffolk Va. 23434 from 3-5pm immediately following the burial. R.W. Baker & Co. Funeral Home and Crematory is serving the family. Condolences can be offered to the family at     

Start Time
End Time

Trinity United Methodist Church
201 Cedar Street
Smithfield, VA 23430
United States

Start Time

Trinity United Methodist Church
201 Cedar Street
Smithfield, VA 23430
United States

Cemetery with full Military Honors

Albert G. Horton Jr. Memorial Veterans Cemetery
5310 Milners Road
Suffolk, VA 23434
United States


Kay, I just returned home and heard your message on my answering machine. I am so sorry for your loss. I definitely plan on seeing you at the church on Thursday. You are in my heart and prayers and surrounded by my love.

Brenda Dunn Johnson

Sending you our thoughts and prayers. Bob passed along David's message. So sorry for your loss. Due to our health, we will be unable to attend the funeral but will be with you in spirit.

William and Betty Jo English

Hey yall I'm so sorry to hear of Uncle Sonny's passing! As much as I wish i could be there for all of you please know that my heart and my prayers have been with you since before Christmas! Sending my family's love and prayers! Call anytime you need an ear! We love yall

Chantelle (Byrd) Burns

Deena, Jay and family
I am so sorry for the loss of your father. In reading the reflection of his life, it's easy to see how you turned out to be such wonderful people. It sounds like he lived such a full and incredible life. We should all be so fortunate. My prayers are with you all.

Debbie Jones George

Deena, Jay, Karen and family
Joseph and I are so sorry about your loss of your dad. We really liked him. He was such a good man. He was very proud of you all. Our prayers are with your family at this time of sadness.

Joseph and Levona Lupton

Kay , my heart goes out to you and your family at this time .I am very thankful I got to know you and SAM several years ago and enjoyed every moment spent with you . Both of you were very well known and very well liked. I enjoyed reading about his life and he certainly had a full one . May GOD bless you in the days ahead and give you peace as you go about your life without him being by your side . I know you are strong and will lean upon GOD and certainly my prayers will be with you.

Gene Harrell

So sorry for your loss. Thoughts and prayers are with you and your family during this time and the coming days

Perry Thomas

Kay, Deena, and Family. I am so sorry to read of Sam's passing. I pray that God will hold you all close and give you His comforting assurance that all is well. Keep those precious memories close to your heart. Love to all. Patti Duman Sowers

Patricia Duman Sowers

We want to express our sincere sympathy to all the family, those we were acquainted with, as well as the ones we may never have had the pleasure of meeting. Please know our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time. Judging from the obituary, it is evident that your husband, brother, father, step-father, grandfather and great-grandfather was an exceptional man and loved and adored by each and every one of you. May God give you continued strength and valor to cope with your loss during the days, weeks, months, and years ahead. His special memories will live on forever in your hearts.

Jimmy & Shirley Wilson

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