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Passing of Samuel Weber, Department of Social Work

Samuel Weber

August 22, 2019

Dear Campus Community:

I am sad to share with you that Samuel L. Weber, a lecturer and coordinator of the Family and Child Studies program in the Department of Social Work, passed away on Wednesday, August 14 after a brief illness. He died peacefully, surrounded by his wife and children. He was 54 years old.

Professor Weber joined the faculty of the former Department of Family and Consumer (Child) Studies in 2005. This department was later subsumed into the Department of Social Work as one of its undergraduate program offerings. He was involved in several international initiatives for deaf children, notably in Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam. He also served as an assistant coach of the Gallaudet women’s basketball team for two seasons, head coach of the Model Secondary School for the Deaf boys’ basketball team for two seasons, and assistant coach of the same team for one season. He coached soccer at Kendall Demonstration Elementary School. Prior to joining the Gallaudet faculty, he worked at the Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center for six years. 

Samuel Lynn Weber, or Sam as he was known, was born on December 29, 1964 in Boise, Idaho, to Cleo B. Marshall-Weber and Leroy H. Weber, both now deceased. He attended the Idaho School for the Deaf and Blind (ISDB) in Gooding, beginning when he was three years old, and graduated in 1984. At ISDB, he played point guard on the boys’ basketball team, and was known throughout the state for his shooting accuracy, defensive prowess, and sportsmanship.

Professor Weber was known to be deeply passionate about providing deaf children with educational opportunities and access to language so that they could reach their full potential. He was much-loved by his students at Gallaudet, and is remembered for being dedicated, open-minded, welcoming, and knowledgeable. He continually pursued new ways to engage and challenge his students, while simultaneously ensuring that his classes were inclusive and meaningful to all who attended. 

Professor Weber was devoted to his wife, Merlinda. Together, they enjoyed attending public events, galas, and cultural gatherings, as well as camping, fishing, and traveling. Their last trip was a two-week Caribbean cruise in December 2018. On this trip, they island-hopped, gazed upon breathtaking sunsets, ate, danced, laughed to their hearts’ content, and celebrated his birthday. They raised three children together: Edward, Shena, and Evelyn. Sam is survived by large extended families in Idaho and Saipan, the largest of the Northern Mariana Islands. 

A funeral service will be held on Sunday, August 25, at 10:30 a.m. at Genesis Funeral Home, 5732 Georgia Avenue N.W., Washington, D.C. There will be a memorial service and repast at 2:30 p.m. at Peikoff Alumni House on the Gallaudet University campus. Professor Weber will be laid to rest at his family’s island home in Saipan.

In lieu of flowers, and in honor of Professor Weber’s lifelong commitment to education, the family asks that donations be made to the Samuel Weber, ’96 & G-’99 Memorial Fund, which will provide support to deserving undergraduate and graduate social work students. 

The Department of Social Work has produced a video with information for its students, which you may view at An English transcript follows the video.

We will remember Professor Weber as a caring and compassionate faculty member who always advocated for his students. It can fairly be said that he was the backbone of the Family and Child Studies program, and that he prepared his students exceptionally well for a variety of advanced study and career options. We extend our condolences to his family, students, and colleagues. I hope that you will join us on Sunday for his memorial service.


Carol J. Erting

Posted by Andrew Greenman | Posted August 22, 2019 at 12:36 PM


800 Florida Avenue NE
Washington, DC 20002


800 Florida Avenue NE
Washington, DC 20002