This obituary originally appeared on Memorial Funeral Home.

Samuel John Shoppell, Jr., 86, of Middletown, RI died peacefully on April 23rd, 2020, at Hope Health Hulitar Hospice Center in Providence, RI after a short illness (non-COVID related).

Sam was born in Philadelphia, PA to the late Samuel John, Sr. and Christine (Gail) Shoppell. He was married for more than 60 years to the late Catherine (Cass) (nee Hegarty) Shoppell. He is survived by all but one of their nine children; Samuel, Stephen, Stanley, san, Scott, Sharon, Stuart, and Stacie; he was pre-deceased by their daughter Carol Anne and his sister, Gail (Shoppell) Holzhaeuser. Sam is survived by their 19 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Sam proudly served in the United States Navy, enlisting in 1953 and serving as a rescue diver and patternmaker at multiple shore and ship assignments up and down the East Coast. He retired as a Master Chief (MLCM) in 1977 after serving for nearly 24 years.

He and his family relocated back to Middletown after falling in love with the area during a tour of duty at Naval Station Newport (1971-1974). Continuing to work after his naval career, he was a well-known face at J.T Connell’s Hardware Store, worked at Quaker Manor, and then as a courtesy driver for Newport Toyota. He fully retired in 2011.

Sam was an avid swimmer and diver; Cass and Sam met as lifeguards at the YMCA in Philadelphia. He enjoyed bowling, camping, cooking and baking, woodworking and motorcycle riding.

The family of Sam Shoppell Jr. would like to thank his care providers at the Naval Health Clinic New England, the Atria Aquidneck Place, the Rhode Island War Veterans Home, the Providence Veterans’ Hospital and the HopeHealth Hulitar Hospice Center.

On Tuesday, 28th April 2020, the family will hold a private viewing followed by the internment at the Newport Memorial Park where both Samuel’s and Catherine’s remains will be interred together.

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