A celebration of life service will be held at 11 am on Wednesday, the 2nd of September at H.M. Patterson & Son--Oglethorpe Hill Chapel. Reverend Catherine Lukens of Canterbury Court will be officiating. Burial will be at a later date at the Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia.
Sam Holliday was born in a Model T Ford on Seymour Road speeding toward Wichita Falls, Texas on the cold night of the 11th of March 1926. His father was driving; in the back seat his mother wrapped him in an old Army blanket and held him on her stomach until they reached the hospital.
He grew up in Texas, and graduated from Lamar High School in Houston in 1943. He graduated from West Point in 1948. He had three successful careers: Army officer, college professor, and thinker.
At West Point Sam was most remembered for his laughter and smile—earning him the name “Smilin’ Sam”. He combined humor with sincerity. He was a hurdler on the track team. In July 1950 he was deployed to Korea at the very start of the Korean War. In his first day of combat he earned the Bronze Star for valor when he covered the withdrawal after an ambush. He experienced the most stressful months of the Korean War in which he earned the Combat Infantryman’s Badge, a second Bronze Star for valor for leading a patrol on the 24th of September 1950, a Purple Heart and a Silver Star on the 21st of May 1951 for the capture of Skeleton Hill at the start of the last offensive of the Korean War.
Sam continued as an active duty officer for a total of twenty-two years including being the first Director of Stability Studies at the Army War College and commanding a brigade in the Vietnam War. He retired as a full Colonel. At the age of forty-two he returned to school entering graduate school at the University of South Carolina. Upon completion of his Ph.D. in International Relations and Management in 1974, he taught at Columbia College, Hood College, Old Dominion University, and the University of Southern California during an academic career of nineteen years, retiring a second time in 1993.
Since 1993 Sam has continued his research and reflection on conflict and cooperation within and between societies including making presentations, publishing articles, and in 2014 publishing the book entitled Forgotten: Ideological Conflicts in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan.
Sam was married to Joan Frances Armiger on the 17th of November 1951 in St. Louis, Missouri; they were married for sixty-nine years.
Sam is survived by his wife Joan, his sons Mark Holliday and Lee Holliday, his daughters-in-law Mary Holliday and Arleen Holliday, his grandchildren Julia Holliday, Brian Holliday, Andrew Holliday, Aliana Holliday, and Ryan Holliday, his great-grandchildren Hannah Holliday Rhoden and Nolan Holliday, his sister Nancy Clendenen, his brother Robert Holliday, and other family and friends.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be given to PatriotPoint, http:patriotpoint.org.