Against all expectations, Ron Sams departed from us for a better life on June 27. Most of us thought of the man as timeless, one untouched by aging. I suppose in later years his hair greyed and thinned a bit, but when you looked at the man you wondered if he would ever grow old. Ron?s spirit seemed just as impervious to old age as his body. His enthusiasm even in his 80’s reminded you of the quality that endeared him to so many in his younger days. Ron Sams was a boy scout in the best sense of that term?one of three Eagle Scouts working in Micronesia in the 1980s, with Dan Mulhauser and Tom Smith being the two others.
Remember these two men shown with me in the photo? The tall one is Fr. Jim Croghan, former director of Xavier who worked in Micronesia for many years up to 2010. In that year he returned to the US to work in Jesuit education in the New York area and hasn?t shown up in the islands until just the other day. He is with us for the summer in his new role as Assistant to the Provincial for the International Apostolate (what we used to call missions).