Farming Rural 20

Terry M. Sample

October 21, 1949 ~ November 18, 2019 (age 70)


A Celebration of Life reception for Terrance M. “Terry” Sample will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 14, 2019 at Steward & Williams Funeral Home.  Private family burial will precede the service at the IOOF Cemetery. Terry, longtime Ellensburg resident, passed away on Monday, November 18, 2019 at the Prestige Care & Rehab Center at the age of 70.

Terry was born on October 21, 1949 in Bremerton, Washington, the second of two boys born to Joseph & Dickie (Lindahl) Sample.  He grew up on the family farm in Gorst where he and his brother raised a variety of animals. Terry also participated in 4-H judging livestock. Terry graduated from South Kitsap High School in 1968 and then completed his post-secondary education at Central Washington State College graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Biology in 1972.

After briefly working for the Soil Conservation District in Spokane, Terry accepted a position as a deckhand with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).  What started as a temporary job resulted in a long career with NOAA as a Fisheries Biologist where he developed many cherished lifelong friendships. He spent numerous summers at sea conducting fish and invertebrate population surveys, primarily in the eastern Bering Sea. He coordinated U.S.-Japanese and U.S.-U.S.S.R. cooperative surveys and was often the first point of contact for visiting foreign scientists at the NOAA Center. After his retirement from NOAA in 2005, Terry moved to Ellensburg to be closer to family.

Terry was an avid collector of all things antique and unique. He traveled the world collecting in his youth, going to places such as Egypt, Korea, Morocco, Greece and parts of Europe.  He continued to add to his collection closer to home later in life, being a regular attendant at yard sales and antique shops. He was an avid photographer and particularly enjoyed editing his pictures and sharing them with family and friends. Terry will be remembered for his sense of humor, his generosity, his love of his family and friends, as well as the big family gatherings held at his home for which he would cook more than enough food.  He also had a love of animals that included his dog Abby and his cat Cougar.

Terry is survived by his children, Ryan (Stephanie) Sample of Ellensburg; Anna Marie Sample of Olympia; Thomas (Stephanie) SampleWood of Redmond; grandson Benjamin Sample; brother Richard (Becky Schnebly) Sample of Ellensburg and his wife Denise Tiedeman of Olympia.

Memorials in Terry’s honor are suggested to a local animal shelter or rescue organization of your choice.  Steward & Williams Funeral Home and Crematory of Ellensburg has been entrusted with caring for Terry’s family.  Online condolences may be left at

To plant a tree in memory of Terry M. Sample, please visit our tribute store.


Celebration of Life
December 14, 2019

2:00 PM
Johnston & Williams Funeral Home and Crematory
301 E. 3rd Ave.
Ellensburg, WA 98926

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