Marvin B. Lam, retired Hoquiam school superintendent, died at home on Sept. 14th, 2009. Marvin was born on February 27, 1928 in Sudan, Texas to Inez and Elie Lam; he was the youngest of eleven children.
His early years were spent in Denver City, a small town in west Texas. As a youth, he enjoyed hunting with his mother and father and anything associated with the outdoors. He also spent time working in the Texas oil fields in and around Denver City.
Marv graduated from high school at the age of 16 and following the instruction from his parents that “you will all go to college”, he attended Oklahoma and Texas Tech Universities, obtaining his master’s degree. Later, he received his superintendent’s credentials and sought his PhD from the University of Washington.
Following college, Marv enlisted in the Army. The majority of his enlistment was spent in Germany. While in Germany he was stationed in the Garmisch-Partenkirchen area and was a member of the Army skeet shooting team. As a member, he received many awards for his shooting prowess.
Marv’s career in education spanned decades and took him and his family many places. Upon leaving Texas, a teaching job in Ione, Washington was his first stop. After Ione, he took a principal’s position at Willapa Valley High School in Menlo, Washington. While working in Menlo, and on a blind date, he met Mary Thomas, the love of his life, and they were married on January 13th. From Menlo he went to Castle Rock as high school principal, then to the Cape Flattery School District as superintendent. He then was Hoquiam school superintendent, retiring in 1987. He served on the Board at Community Hospital and was a director for the ESD 113. He became an instrument rated private pilot in 1982.
After retirement, Marv and Mary traveled the world from Vienna to Victoria Falls, from Beijing to Budapest, Germany to Great Britain and a safari in Africa. Although these trips took them all over the world, he was just as happy to dig a razor clam, shoot a round of golf or spend time hunting with good friends. He was an active member at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church and he was a volunteer PAL for PANCAN where he inspired so many people who had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He planned so many activities with the grandchildren and they adore him. He was truly a man who enjoyed people and all of the opportunities the world has to offer and his was a life well lived.
Marv is survived by his wife Mary, at home. Sisters, Gwen and Norma Jean, of Texas, sons, Dan (Malyn) and Tim and daughter Abby (Joe) Santos; five grandsons, Jason, Gregory, Ted, Chase and Joey, two granddaughters, Carly and Kacie.
With this we send Marv to:
His happy hunting ground,
Where all tags are guaranteed,
Game is abundant,
The clams are neckin’,
The bite is always on,
And every drive is down the middle.
A memorial service is scheduled for Saturday Sept. 19 at 11.00 a.m. at St. Andrews Episcopal Church, 400 E. 1st, Aberdeen, WA. A reception will follow at the Aberdeen Elks Lodge.
Donations can be made to: St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, 400 E. 1st, Aberdeen, WA 98520 or the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, www.pancan.org.