Dr. A. Dain Samples
Extemporaneously and off the top of my head, this could be hard to
My brother-in-law was a very unique individual, and, I didn't have a
lot of years to spend close to him, because they did live in California for a long time.
But we had many a debate, even over the telephone (laughter). I think three things remind
me of Dain, or come to me when I think of Dain. One of them is the word
"wonder". Dain seemed to always wonder.
We've heard that kind of said here today; John Wayne reflected on
the fact that Dain was always questioning, debating, and from that he learned. Anything
that happened -- with the boys in the last year particularly -- it's been so fun to watch
him when he was around us, that everything was a wonder that his little boys did and he
just couldn't... I know we've probably all done it with our kids, every little thing that
they did he was always looking at the educational value of whatever that was, or how it
was going to affect them, or what they would do with that in the future, you know, how
that would be.
The other word I think that comes to me when I think of Dain is the
word joy. He really was a fun person, most all the time, to be with. I know with his
students he was probably serious, but I betcha there were plenty of times when there were
fun things in what he did or what he said or how he told you to do something. I know he's
always been that way with family and friends.
On the memory table, if you'll look around you'll see that a lot of
the things we were able to pull out and pull from Dain were joke books, and notes on his
table. Little quips and quotes that he had put here and there. I think one of them, or a
couple of them, are shared in your bulletin today.
And one last thing that he really always did, and that was the
questioning. The questioning of the hereafter; the questioning of life in general. And, to
me anyway, it always seems that, somehow, that when we get into education, education in
itself sometimes can give us a lot more questions than it gives us answers. And he really
always was searching, and I really believe that at this point, he's found his answers. I
hope that all of you will take that as some kind of a lesson for each one of you.
If we don't gain anything else from the life that we shared in those
years with Dain, I think that's one thing that we should know; that questioning is good,
searching is wonderful; education is great, but at some point you have to stop and try to
take in to your own inner faith, your own inner feelings, and your own inner needs, and
know what they are. In Dain's own way, he kind of preached his own ministry over the
years. He started out as a minister a long time ago, and I sat in church a couple of times
and listened to him preach as a preacher, and he was good. He didn't like that as well as
he did teaching, but he was good at it, as I'm sure he would've been at almost anything
he'd undertaken to do. But I think that that's kind of the ministry he's given; teaching
us all to search just a little bit. Soul search. Book search. Whatever it takes to come up
with the faith that you need to get on in this life, and Dain's found his now.
Dain's former office mate at the
University of California at Berkeley
I wasn't with him all of those eight years (laughter), I was with
him for five. I would certainly echo the statements about his love, and his concern, and
his searching for truth. But, there's one thing I think he would want his students to
know... I presume he told his wife and parents at some point, but, one of the reasons it
took him eight year's to do it [get his Ph.D.], was... he would insist time and again that
he wasn't going to let the university get in the way of his education. (laughter)
And I encourage you not to let that happen either. There are
regulations and things you have to do, but he... If something came up that he had to learn
about, whether it was philosophy or German, or some part of computer science that wasn't
going to count toward his degree, he would look at it and learn about it.
I didn't have his wisdom of years, I guess, and so I got out a little bit earlier.
I also had family back home to come to, and, the last thing I
guess... We both were sort of in this situation of being out on the west coast and wanting
to come back home. That was part of his dream and part of mine. I came back home and was
with my mother for a year, and then she died. And it hurt then tremendously, and it still
hurts a lot. But the year was good. It was good to get back home and be there for that
time to have back together again.
And I'm sure, that for Dain, it was also good to get back home and
have that time together.
John C. Samples
That prompts an observation that I wanted to comment on earlier and
neglected to. The question comes that, Dain worked so hard and sacrificed so much to
achieve the goals that were important to him, and then didn't have time to enjoy them.
the point is, he accomplished them!
I think that's the real point. Press on. Press on.
This is no easier for me than any of the other family.
Dain and I were about three months apart; they used to put us in the
same crib together when we were tiny. Most of you knew him as a grown man; I knew him as a
child, and all the things that have been said about him as an adult were true as a child.
We explored things together. We looked for things together. We even had children together
as we [my husband Bruce and I] have a daughter who is fourteen months old, as his twins
are. Yet, the one thing I remember about him most is the day he held her, and he looked at
me and said, "It answers the question; not all babies are the same. Those (the twins)
are mine, and she's wonderful."
He knew... When those little boys came, Pat, when you two were a
complete family... you were always together, but that finished out everything he'd ever
wanted. You completed a dream he had, even as a child, that what he knew had to go to
Thank you all for learning from him.
closing remarks and prayer were not recorded.
The service lasted 95 minutes, the tape lasted 90.
Like Dain, the tape did not last long enough for us.