Sad News about NWTF Pioneer Sam Crouch, Sr.

06/23/2008

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Sam Crouch, Sr. and Sam Crouch, Jr.

EDGEFIELD, S.C. — National Wild Turkey Federation pioneer Sam Crouch, Sr. of Edgefield, S.C., passed away last Friday. Crouch was an NWTF Life Member and had a long and distinguished history with the Federation. He was 85.

He played a major role in the decision to relocate the NWTF, founded in March of 1973 from Fredericksburg, Va. to Edgefield in June of 1973. He was instrumental in organizing the Edgefield Chapter, which was the first NWTF chapter in S.C., and in 1974, became the first President of the South Carolina State Chapter.

His fingerprint on the organization was mimicked across the country. Today, more than 2,350 chapters, just like the one he started in Edgefield, have cropped up throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico. These chapters, together, the NWTF’s conservation partners, have spent more than $258 million on the NWTF’s mission of conserving the wild turkey and preserving the hunting tradition.

“Sam has one of the longest, richest and most colorful histories in the NWTF family,” said Dr. James Earl Kennamer, NWTF’s senior vice president for conservation programs. “He was a friend to the organization, he was a great personal friend and he will be dearly missed.”

In 1985 Crouch received the Roger Latham Service award, which is given to NWTF members who are not employed as professional wildlife managers, but have made significant contributions to wild turkey conservation.

Earlier this year, during the NWTF’s National Convention, Crouch was presented the C.B. McCleod Award, given annually to an NWTF volunteer who has dedicated his or her life to wildlife, conservation and our hunting heritage.

“Sam’s conservation work didn’t end with the NWTF,” said Kennamer. “He also served on the Board of Directors of the South Carolina Wildlife Federation, and was a past state president. He founded the South Carolina Turkey Calling Championship, was the past president of the South Carolina Association of Field Trial Clubs and was appointed by three state governors as Advisor to the South Carolina Wildlife Commission.”

Surviving him include his wife, Aline Williams Crouch; one son- H. Sam (Jeannie) Crouch, Jr, Edgefield; one sister- Helen C. Ackerman, Columbia; one granddaughter- Sandy (Joe) Brusca, Jacksonville, Fla; and 2 great-grandsons.

Funeral Services were held this morning at Edgefield United Methodist Church, followed by burial in Sunset Gardens Memorial Park.

Memorials may be made to Edgefield United Methodist Church General Fund, P.O. Box 25, Edgefield, SC 29824; The Christian Children Fund, 2821 Emerywood Parkway, Richmond, VA 23294 or the charity of one’s choice.