Obituaries » Sam Armstead

Sam Armstead

May 17, 1932 - August 27, 2017

Burial Date: September 16, 2017

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Sam Armstead, Jr. was born on May 17, 1932 to the proud parents of Sam Armstead, Sr. and Bertha Armstead in Houston, Texas.  He was the third born child and first boy of eight siblings.  Sam was affectionately known as “Jr”.

Sam accepted Christ as his Lord and Savior at an early age and attended his Grandfather’s church, Mount Olive Missionary Baptist in Houston, TX.

Sam received his education in elementary, junior high, and high school throughout the Houston Texas Unified School District.

Sam had a beautiful daughter Ida Kathryn (Kat) Armstead-Minnick from a previous relationship with Joyce Minnick.

Sam met and married the Love of his life, Lizzie Johnson and to their union three beautiful daughters were born,  Mary Armstead, Sylvia Armstead, and Stephanie Armstead; and one step-daughter, Marilyn Johnson (from Lizzie’s previous relationship).  Sam was very protective of his girls and created nicknames for each of them:  Mary (Stanky), Sylvia (Sweet Thang), Stephanie (Red), and Marilyn (Devil).

Sam was extremely intelligent, creative, artistic, and blessed with gifted hands.  He was very driven as a young man, eventually finding his niche in construction/contractor work.  He built a successful career in construction and later started his own business “Armstead and Associates”; specializing in lathing, plastering and historical stucco cornice restoration.  He was known to move and groove in areas where construction was booming.  His specialty swimming pool designs were showcased in the well-known “Ebony” magazine.  He soon created a name for himself in several states:  Texas, California, Illinois, and Mississippi.  Sam became well known for his  work in Mississippi restoring historical buildings such as the Hancock County Courthouse including other historical buildings throughout South Mississippi and the entire Gulf Coast.  Sam’s motto is “Where there is work I will follow”!  he eventually settled down in Mississippi, also known as “the playground of the south” and made Ole’ Miss his residence.

Sam has always been known to thrive and survive anywhere and in any setting.  He survived the natural disaster Hurricane Katrina in August 2005 and also received local recognition for saving a woman’s life during that tumultuous period.  He is tagged with the mantra “I’m a survivor, I’m not gone give up, I’m not gone stop, I’m gone work harder.”  He kept going and displayed strength throughout his life.

Sam and Lizzie later divorced and he never remarried.

Sam was preceded in death by is parents, Sam Armstead, Sr.  and Bertha Armstead; brother, Larry Armstead (died at age 2); three sisters, Beatrice Taylor, Ester Johnson, and Betty James.

Sam was diagnosed with stage 4 aggressive liver cancer, July 2017.  The goodness of God allowed us to enjoy the life of Sam for many years.  On August, 27,2017 he made his peaceful transition to glory.  Loved ones left to cherish his memories are daughters, Ida Kathryn Armstead-Minnick; Mary Armstead-Watkins (Marvin) of California, Sylvia Armstead-Duncan of California, and Stephanie Armstead-Hornbuckle (Oliver) of Georgia; step-daughter, Marilyn Johnson of Georgia; six grandchildren, Dominique Atkins, Marvin Watkins, Jr., Marquis Watkins, Erica Ford, Royce Duncan, Oliver Hornbuckle, II; two great granddaughters, Tiana Atkins, Taliyah Atkins; his companion, Edna Allen (affectionately known as his “sweet thing”) of Gulfport, MS; adopted daughter Sherry Parker (Jimmy) of Gulfport, MS; adopted grandchildren; two sisters, Nila Hill of Weimer, TX, Sylvia Jenkins (James) of Victorville, CA; one brother, Charles Armstead (Demetra) of Humble, TX; loving nieces, nephews, cousins and a host of friends.