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Memories & Candles

“I was fortunate to know Sam as a fellow volunteer at Jordan Hospital. A bunch of us had a great time each Wednesday afternoon telling stories and...Read More »
1 of 5 | Posted by: Steve Fletcher - Plymouth, MA

“Dear Mrs. Bartlett, Tom, Mary, Molly, and Family, It seems not all that long ago, I ran into Mr. Bartlett volunteering at the Jordan Hospital. ...Read More »
2 of 5 | Posted by: Mary Jane Cakhoun-Donelan - MA

“I will always remember Sam as a wonderfully gruff and softhearted man. The way he told his colorful story was only matched by the dedication he had...Read More »
3 of 5 | Posted by: David Slye - Needham, MA - friend

“So sad to read about the death of Sam. We grew up together in Dedham & connected again in Plymouth. He presided, along with his wonderful wife, Joan...Read More »
4 of 5 | Posted by: Julie Pettit - Falmouth, Mass, MA

“May the family hearts be filled with wonderful memories of joyful life the family shared together as the family celebrate a wonderful life well lived...Read More »
5 of 5 | Posted by: GP

Samuel B. Bartlett died in Plymouth on March 31, 2018 at the age of eighty-two. His fourth grade teacher called him a rugged individualist. In his memoir Sam praises Mrs. Anderson as the best teacher he ever had and, agreeing with her assessment, translated her words to “stubborn thickheaded son of a B.” His description didn’t seem to fit the public image of the man who went on to a life of diplomacy in the US Foreign Service, until the last three years of his life when he stubbornly fought dementia his own way and railed at the sad demise of American diplomacy. At Noble and Greenough School, he played hockey and was captain of the football team. By the time he got to Dartmouth he had had five concussions and after the sixth was told he could no longer play football. He concentrated then on partying and studying history. After graduation in 1957, he served in the National Guard before entering Harvard Law School. He joined Ely Bartlett Brown and Procter, the family law firm, before going into the Foreign Service. Sam joined the Foreign Service in 1965 and served in Paris, The Hague, Cebu, Ottawa, San Salvador, Belfast, and at the State Department in Washington DC. He was a consummate diplomat with a biting wit and the ability to get along with people from all walks of life. He was as comfortable at an elegant reception in Paris as he was at a barrio fiesta in the Philippines. A distinguished diplomat, he treasures his friends around the world and the times he spent with them. An enthusiastic sailor, both on his own boats and on those of friends’, he sailed in the Fastnet Race on a Dutch boat and in the Hong Kong to Manila Race. Tennis was a constant. In each country he got together a foursome. The games were fast, competitive and always outrageous, with the usual yelling and friendly insults. Sam retired from the State Department in 1986 and took the job of corporate secretary to the Amoskeag Company in Boston and later launched his fourth career to work for the Massachusetts Bureau of Substance Abuse. He continued this work as a volunteer in the addiction field after his retirement, putting to good use his ability to connect with people who were struggling. He stayed close to his old school friends and to his Plymouth friends, old and new. He leaves his wife of sixty-one years, the former Joan Harding; three children: Tom and wife Linda; Molly and husband Robert Stoner; Mary and husband Greg Petrini; eight grandchildren: Samuel and Eleanor Bartlett; Lily, Isaac, and Rosemary Stoner; Maddy, Curt and Lee Petrini. All loved and joked with their father and grandfather who arranged “family hikes” hut to hut in the White Mountains and lobstering and fishing expeditions in the cove in front of their house in Plymouth. Services on Saturday on April 21 at 11 am the Peabody Pavillion @ Plimoth Plantation.

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