Lt. Col. Samuel Stevenson, USMC (Ret.)


Samuel H. Stevenson of West Tisbury died at his home on Feb. 15, 2020. He was 83 years old. 

Samuel Stevenson

Sandy, as he was referred to, was born in New York City, N.Y., on August 12, 1936, the first of three children of Robert Alston Stevenson Jr. and Georgina Woods Stevenson. As a boy he lived in New York City, and spent summers at the family home in West Tisbury. It was here, at the Vineyard, that he learned his love of sailing. When home on summer break from school, he worked summers sailing boats to and from Florida, and working for Mr. Goodale. He loved to reminisce about his summers on the Vineyard as a child and young adult.

He began his education at the Allen-Stevenson School in New York, and transferred to Choate College Preparatory, graduating in 1954. He entered Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., to study biomechanical engineering. While at RPI, he met his bride, Kathleen Marseilles Selover, who attended Russell Sage in Troy. After his graduation at RPI with the class of 1957, he married his college sweetheart Kathleen on Feb. 14, 1958. After a short honeymoon, he returned to enter the U.S. Marine Corps in March 1958 as a second lieutenant. He served 18 years, and was awarded the Bronze Star Medal with Combat “V,” Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Unit Commendation, National Defense Service Medal; Vietnam Service Medal with 4 stars; Republic of Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Silver Star. He served overseas in Okinawa, Japan, and Vietnam.

After retiring from the Marine Corps, Sam remained in Northern Virginia, and worked as a defense contractor. In 1988, he retired and returned to the family home in West Tisbury. After his return to the Island, he worked as a bookkeeper and accountant. He passed the special enrollment examination of the IRS in 1986, and opened Stevenson Tax Service. He and Kathleen were devoted members at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church. Over the years on the Vineyard he could be found at the early morning men’s “coffee talk” at Conroy’s Apothecary, and making his 10th daily trip to the Post Office. Over the past couple of years, he enjoyed his time being at home, in the solitude of Indian Hill Road.

He was predeceased by his wife, Kathleen, and by his sister, Gina S. McEnany. He is survived by his two children, Scott and Rebecca, and his two grandchildren, Ryan and Shannon. 

Interment will be private in West Tisbury, with a celebration of life to be scheduled at a later date. Donations can be made to Martha’s Vineyard Hospice; or P.O. Box 748, Vineyard Haven, MA 02568. 

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