West Resthaven Funeral Home & Resthaven Park Cemetery

6450 West Northern Ave, Glendale, AZ


Samuel David Lantz

July 6, 1959July 25, 2020

Samuel David Lantz passed away on Saturday, July 25, 2020 in Phoenix, Arizona. His life was a grand adventure. He was full of life, told great tales, a friend to all, and had a warm and wonderful laugh.

The youngest (and smartest) of three siblings, Sam was born on July 6, 1959 at White Cross Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. Growing up in Detroit, Michigan with two older sisters, Laura and Susan, wasn’t always easy. Sam’s mother, Caroline, single-handedly raised her children for 10 years and instilled in each love, compassion, a great work ethic and the knowledge that they could achieve anything.

At age 10, Sam’s world expanded with the addition of a father, Kirk. They enjoyed many adventures together in the Boy Scouts, including the famous trip to the Philmont Scout Ranch in Arizona. Rumor has it that they were so dirty upon their return that their underwear could stand up by themselves.

Sam graced the halls of Jared W. Finney High School, graduating in 1977 as Class President. He perfected his golf skills during high school and developed life-long friendships. From there he followed his older sister Laura to the University of Michigan, and then changed course and entered the U.S. Navy.

Sam served six years and was honorably discharged. Much of his service was aboard the U.S.S. Bremerton, SSN 698 (https://www.csp.navy.mil/bremerton/About/). There too he gained many friendships. He had many tales of his adventures in the Navy and aboard the U.S.S. Bremerton, SSN 698, some he would share with all and others only known to his Navy buddies, but everyone knew about the “Pinto Mobile”.

In 1987, Sam moved his family from Ohio to Arizona and began working at the Palo Verde Nuclear Power Plant. After the arrival of Sam Jr and Ben, Sam graduated to “Big Sam” as all his friends and family would call him.

Sam raised five wonderful, brilliant and loving children, Takiysha McLaughin (41), Tyree Dawkins (40), Tanettra Dawkins (38), Samuel D. Lantz, Jr. (31) and Benjamin S. Lantz (29). He loved them dearly and was proud of each and every one.

Sam was engaged to be married in 2021 to Cleof Endat Dawat and they had great plans. He had finally found the love he’d been searching for with Cleof.

Sam leaves behind to celebrate his life and continue his legacy: Mother, Caroline Coykendall, Father, Duane (Kirk) Coykendall; fiancee, Cleof Endat Dawat; sisters Laura Plevek (Phil) and Susan Youngkin (John); Mother to his children, Deborah Lantz; children, Takiysha McLaughlin (Ian), Tyree Dawkins, Tanettra Dawkins, Samuel D. Lantz, Jr., and Benjamin S. Lantz; Grandchildren, Michael and Makayla McLaughlin; Nieces Andrea Plevek (Lindsey), Ebone Lewis and Katherine Youngkin; Nephews Phil Plevek, Brett Lewis, Brandon Lewis and Sean Youngkin; and many, many, many friends - all who were like family to him.


  • Visitation

    Sunday, August 9, 2020


Samuel David Lantz

have a memory or condolence to add?

Michael Kennon

August 10, 2020

His laugh... Sammy had the best!!! You could hear him everywhere when he had a good laugh ....always upbeat, played he’s cards as they lay....always greeted you with a smile.... was a great supervisor... He is missed greatly by everyone ... His memory will endure for generations to come..... Thx Sammy for being you....and being out the best in everybody....

Rosemarie Majors

August 9, 2020

Sam was a force at Palo Verde Nuclear Plant. He was an amazing bowler and a serious bowler. He brightened up the room and people were comfortable talking to Sam. My condolences to all of his family. A life cut to short but heaven got a special angel. Lots of prayers and love for the family.

david mcfelia

August 9, 2020

I've had the pleasure of working with Sam at PVNGS for over 30 years. He inspired many with his love, wisdom and friendship. I will miss his jolly laugh and wonderful personality. In the Journey of life some people leave a mark so deep. May you all find peace and love in the memories you cherish. With heartfelt condolences......

Tra Maslar

August 8, 2020

Sorry to hear of Sam's passing. One of the good guys, gone too soon. I remember when he started at Palo Verde in 1987. We had fun playing hoops and softball. We'll miss you.

Tony Jennings

August 8, 2020

Sammie and I served onboard the Bremerton as M-div nukes in the early 80’s. He was a great friend and shipmate with an infectious smile. It’s hard to believe he’s gone. When I think of him I think of a young man in his twenties with that great head of hair. He will be greatly missed.

Patrick Kikendall

August 8, 2020

Sammy was always a straightforward kind of guy when it came the people at Palo Verde,. He could find the humor in just about anything, and his hardy deep belly laughs were infectious. I was shocked to hear that he passed, but he is now on another venture, not gone, just gone ahead, while we won’t see him here we will always find him fondly in our hearts, and carry a part of him where ever we go!!

I pray the family can find comfort in this time of sorrows.
God Bless, Pat

Lara Marie Ortega

August 7, 2020

Poem for uncle Sam

To Uncle Sam,

Season changes as free as the air,
like hare in a woodland, time runs fast
in ways that somehow
I almost forgot of imagining.
Never thought 'bout this day would come,
Angels knocked on your door—
and now you're gone.
But that won't erase our stories—
the fact of how you became part of this family.

As clear as crystal water,
I can still remember how afraid was I
with your silvery voice,
with your great silhouette,
And was my first moment with you(funny thing).
That day, you hug me
like for the seemingly longest time
we've known each other,
Yes, it ended the first impression I had,
it gave me warmth, home in your arms
like what a family does.

Cold breeze reminds me
of every Christmas season with you.
Everyone's excitement were immeasurable
with how you act as Santa Claus,
with your gifts around for everyone.
Chromatic lights twinkling around,
and everyone's jiving, grooving in—
replaying how you smiled,
how you painted
genuine goodness in your heart.

Let's call it once in my life,
even it happened many times
of how you became a father to me, to us.
'How are you doin'?' You asked,
Those artless words,
spoke of how genuinely good you are—
You cared not just because we're family,
but you cared because you're uncle Sam,
the person I'm grateful with
of becoming part of my life.

Like the ebb and flow of tides, somehow
things that are beyond our control—
no one can do to prevent or change them.
Now, angels knocked on your door,
you unexpectedly opened it for them;
that won't erase our stories—
the fact that how you became
one of the greatest persons in this family.

Uncle Sam, I still believe
that it's not the end,
someday somehow,
in a place filled with wonder,
I know we'll be seeing each other.

—Lara Marie Ortega

Chester Kuki

August 6, 2020

I remember Sam fondly. I know him from work at Palo Verde. Sam attitude was always upbeat and positive. Cheerful, he gave smiles to everyone he encountered. Sam was taken too soon. He will be missed.

Rose White

August 6, 2020

Sending prayers and sympathy to Sam’s family. I was a high school classmate of Sam’s many years ago and have many fond memories of him.

Cleofe Dawat

August 6, 2020

Sam is my fiancè. He such a great guy who loves to laugh and make everyone happy. I am the luckiest person to capture his heart and knowing him is the best thing that happens to me.
Sam always think about others before himself. He became our SAMta Clause, every Christmas when he visit Philippines. Watching the kids with their grateful smile recieving gifts,for him it is priceless. People here calls him Samta and he will be always remembered for all the generous act he have done here in our place. He always have the positive thoughts about everything.
Rest in peace my Palangga, u are always in my heart. Thank u for everthing and we all love you

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