Samantha Ryan Hemphill, known to her friends and family as Sam, 22, died Wednesday, August 24, 2022, after a long illness. Sam grew up, lived in, and loved Vermont, especially her home of Essex. Sam loved the outdoors and felt most alive and at peace amongst the rivers, lakes, mountains, and meadows of Vermont, no matter the season. Whether hiking, skiing, hammocking, or creating art, Sam enjoyed her time with gratitude, presence, and enthusiasm, often with her faithful dog Alva by her side. Sam filled her days with the people and activities that gave her joy- skiing at Smuggler’s Notch with her Mom, studying for her degree, hiking Honey Hollow, painting glass bottles, hammocking at Indian Brook, listening to her diverse play list with her Dad, practicing yoga on her patio, watching backyard movies at Grace’s house, adventuring with Emily, enjoying Montreal with Linna, playing games with her cousins, attending family gatherings, traveling with her brother and sister-in-law, watching movies with her sister, and baking homemade pop tarts for her close neighborhood family. Spending time with friends, neighbors, and family was central to Sam’s life. Sam packed so much living into her 22 years and lived her life with passion and purpose. Sam was a renaissance woman, a true scholar, deep thinker, conversationalist, artist, athlete, pianist, gymnast, volunteer, and mathematician. Truly, she was good at everything, yet humble, compassionate, and kind. A gifted engineer and recent posthumous graduate of Northeastern University, Sam hoped to combine her love for the environment with her skill as a civil engineer. Sam was also a talented artist. Throughout her life, art was a constant, most especially through her high school and college years. She explored many mediums- paint, watercolor, ink, fabric and more. Prolific, varied, intricate, and inspiring, her artwork was a source of joy, therapy, and mindfulness. Sam gifted her art freely an her family would like to share her art with the world in order to support protecting the environment and support families facing the burden of battling cancer.
In lieu of flowers a non profit fund will be set up to work on the above causes for which Sam so passionately advocated. If you wish to make a contribution please make payable to or contact:
19 Cedar Street
Essex, VT 05452
Please reference “The Sammo Fund”
Sam will live on in the hearts and memories of the many, many folks whose lives she touched. She really did not dwell on the negative, instead she focused on making the most of the present and moving forward.
‘Cause all of the stars
Are fading away
Just try not to worry
You’ll see them someday
Just take what you need
And be on your way
And stop crying your heart out
- Oasis, Stop Crying Your Heart Out
We are forever the love, care, expertise, and support provided by Sam’s nurses, doctors, and treatment providers at Dana Farber and UVM Medical Center. Please never, ever, give up in your quest for a cure.
Words cannot express the sadness we feel in losing Sam. Neither can they express the love and pride we feel for having her as a daughter, sister, and friend. We are better because of her light. We love you Sam, always.
Sam was the daughter of Matthew and Clare Hemphill, and sister of Jessica, 24, and Christopher, 30, and sister-in-law of Katie, 31. She will be missed by her loving and large family of aunts, uncles, and cousins. Alva, her dog, misses her immensely. Sam is predeceased by her sister, Sarah Rose, her grandparents John E. and Ellen (Guilfoy) Hemphill of Hyannis, MA, and Rosemary (Ryan) and Charles C. Stewart of Concord, MA, her uncle John W. Hemphill of Quincy, MA, and her aunt Ellen M. Gamboa of Concord, MA.
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