Ernest Samuel Cross, III

Cross, Sam color web pic“Sam”

July 1949 ~ October 2014

Sam Cross, 65, died peacefully at Alexander Cohen Hospice House in Hughson, CA after a year-long struggle with cancer. He is survived by his loving wife of 36 years, Cyndy, and his sister Susie Sellers (Duncan) of Colorado Springs CO, brother-in-law Steve (Glenda) Flentje of Fullerton CA, and mother-in-law Bev Flentje of Payson AZ.

Sam was born in Baltimore MD, attended and graduated from Gilman School in Baltimore. He spent his summers in the White Mountains of New Hampshire where he learned to fly fish, was a Junior Maine Guide and a Randolph Mountain Trail Crew member. Sam received his Bachelors of Science Degree from University of Baltimore in 1973 and his MBA from USC in 1974.

Sam had a lifelong love of organized sports starting with his football career at Gilman and University of Baltimore and his Lacrosse career at Gilman and USC. He loved to watch and read about his Beltway teams including: Baltimore Orioles, Baltimore Ravens, Baltimore/Indianapolis Colts, Washington Nationals and Washington Capitals. Only the Phoenix Suns at the professional level and USC at the college level were teams outside the Baltimore/Washington area that he loved.

He also found great pleasure in fly fishing, especially in Gaspe’ Bay, Quebec, and in the White Mountains of New Hampshire and the White Mountains of Arizona.

In 1976 he moved to Phoenix where he met and married Cyndy in 1978. His entire career was in the transportation industry, first with Greyhound Corporation and Gates Lear Jet in Arizona, and 25 years in California Trucking, 1989 – 2014, first with Condor Freight Lines and later with Rocha Transportation. His love of transportation and vehicles included high performance luxury cars.

Sam loved being a teacher and he used these skills in trucking safety and maintenance management, football officiating, and sharing his faith in Jesus. . He started officiating football in 1978 until he retired in December 2013 to stay involved in the sport he loved and to share that passion with other officials and football players. Sam helped lead his trucking firms to be awarded numerous safety and maintenance management awards. Sam also received the Silver Spark Plug award from the American Trucking Association for Trucking Maintenance.

Sam always made others feel as if they were his best friend, and loved being the life of the party and making people laugh. He loved to Live Life Large.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions be made in Sam’s name to Gilman School, Attn. Development Office, 5407 Roland Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21210 or online at www.gilman.edu/onlinegiving. Please earmark checks “in memory of Sam Cross.”

A Memorial Service will be held at New Life Christian Center, 2918 W. Tuolumne Road, Turlock CA on Friday, Oct. 31st at 10:30am with a reception to follow. A private family burial will be held at a future time.


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