Gregory Allen Sams, 62, of East Peoria, passed away at 2:57pm Saturday September 28, 2019 at OSF St. Francis Medical Center in Peoria.
Greg was born October 30, 1956 in Peoria to the late, G.A. and Janet Hyde Sams. He enjoyed 43 years as a husband, marrying LaVonna Watts on April 24, 1976 in Varna; she survives.
Also surviving are their children, Martin “Marty” (Rachel) Sams of Indianapolis and Cassandra “Cassi” Sams of St. Louis; granddaughter, Jillian; brothers, Jay (Shawna), Doug (Mary), and Troy (Stephanie) Sams, Brother-in-law Michael (Mary Jane) Watts; nieces and nephews, Tira, Lacey, Carly, Jayson, Rachel, Jesse, Nick, Emily, Toby, Alyssa, Mindy, and Bob; 17 great-nieces and nephews; and many aunts, uncles, and cousins.
He was also preceded in death by his oldest brother, Timothy Sams.
Greg was a proud East Peoria Raider, graduating in 1974 and serving on multiple reunion committees
He retired from Caterpillar in 2015 after 38 years. He was a Gleason operator in the TBU at Building KK for many years. He then became an Inspector, Line Supervisor and earned his Six Sigma Black Belt before becoming a Quality Engineer. He was a member of UAW Local 974, was a Union Steward and member of the safety committee. After retirement, Greg continued his service at Caterpillar by working part time as a subcontractor with ITC for three years. Greg was a fan of the Bears and Cardinals and enjoyed watching their games with Family. Music was a lifelong passion, beginning with high school choir leading to singing, playing guitar and harmonica for many local country bands over the years. He and his wife provided DJ and karaoke for many events as G&L Entertainment. He was a 33 year member of Taylor Lodge A.F. & A.M No. 98 in Washington where he served most recently as Worshipful Master. Additionally, he was a member of the Shrine and Scottish Rite, as well as an active member of the Abbas Grotto. Greg also was a member of Pekin Moose Lodge #916 and was a past member of the East Peoria Jaycees.
Family will receive friends from 5-7:00pm Friday, October 4, 2019 at Deiters Funeral Home and Crematory in Washington. A celebration of life gathering will follow at Abbas Grotto in East Peoria. In keeping with Greg’s style and personality, guests are encouraged to wear team apparel (unless it’s the Packers).
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to EPCHS Choral Department.