UPDATED ON 6: Funeral Arrangements Announced For Terry "Trooper - WJBF-TV ABC 6 Augusta-Aiken

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UPDATED ON 6: Funeral Arrangements Announced For Terry "Trooper Terry" Sams

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Augusta, GA -

***UPDATED at 6:59 P.M. on Friday, April 11th***

Visitation and funeral arrangements have been announced for Terry "Trooper" Sams, who passed away Friday morning.

Memorial Services for Mr. Terry R. "Trooper" Sams, Sr., 80, of North Augusta, who entered into rest April 11th, will be conducted Thursday at 6:00 p.m. at First Baptist Church, of North Augusta. Dr. Tommy Meador, Dr. Randy Cooper and Reverend Roy Kiser will be officiating.

Terry was a native of Elizabethton, Tennessee. He made North Augusta his home for the past 52 years. He was a member of the First Baptist Church of North Augusta, where he was active in the music ministry and played the trombone in the church orchestra.

Terry began his career in broadcasting at the age of 16 at WBEJ radio station in Elizabethton, Tennessee. In the early 1960’s, he relocated to WJBF News Channel 6 in Augusta, where he served as Station Manager, Vice President, Program Director, Announcer, Weatherman, On Air Talent, and at one time, part owner. He was notably known as “Trooper Terry”, the star of a local children’s program for 20 years. He retired from WJBF as the President and General Manager. He was a former member of the Augusta Exchange Club and the Salvation Army Board.

Survivors include his wife of 62 years, Shirlene Slagle Sams; a son, Terry R. Sams, Jr., of Elizabethton, Tennessee; three daughters and sons-in-law, Terissa and Buddy Crites, and Kate and Robbie Bryant, all of North Augusta; and Patrice and Kenny Crapps, Johnson City, Tennessee; nine grandchildren and eight great grandchildren; three brothers, B.J. Sams, of Little Rock, Arkansas; Gene Sams and Elmer Sams, Jr., both of Elizabethton, Tennessee.

The family will receive friends at the church following the service.

Memorials may be made The Salvation Army, Major Tony Perez, 1833 Broad Street, Augusta, GA 30904.

Posey Funeral Directors of North Augusta in charge of arrangements (803-278-1181).

Click here for more information and to send condolences to the family.


***POSTED at 11:13 A.M. on Friday, April 11th***

It's is a very sad day for the WJBF News Channel 6 family. We have lost one of our most beloved family members. Terry Sams, known far and wide as “Trooper Terry”, has died. Our Brad Means has a look at the rich life, and lasting legacy, of this CSRA television icon.

"Hey Kids!"

Two words that signaled the start of the show that mesmerized the young masses when it hit the airwaves.

As popular as Trooper Terry was, though, the man who played him...Terry Sams, was even more beloved.

He was beloved as a man who seemingly held just about every job there was here at WJBF News Channel 6 during its early days.

It's a long list of positions indeed:
  • Program Director
  • Promotion Manager
  • Public Service Director
  • Special Events Coordinator
  • Writer
  • Weatherman
  • Even Station Manager, just to name a very few.
  • He even was a part-owner of WJBF at one time.
And, if you thought Terry was busy inside our walls, he was just as involved and active when he left Television Park each day. He loved his church, loved his choir, and was a very talented musician.

He adored his family and they adored him. They had to learn to cherish the precious time they had Terry to themselves, because he gave so much of himself to us.

This community was so important to him. You and me, and everybody within the sound of his voice on the radio, or the sight of his handsome face on the TV...we were his family too, and he cherished us.

Just a few short months ago, he helped to celebrate WJBF's 60th Anniversary with a Trooper Terry reunion show.

He hadn't missed a beat, had he? It was like he was transporting everybody back in time when we thought we'd be little forever.

Those Trooper Terry audiences grew up and got older, but they never forgot those magical moments watching the man and his magic screen light up our imaginations.

Terry never lost his touch for broadcasting, either. He stayed with his Television Park family right up 'til the end. You can still hear his voice on a lot of commercials.

We all know that life can go by so quickly. Sometimes, the days, weeks, and months are just a blur. But, it's nice to know that there are some parts of us that can't be washed away or even diminished by the rapid passage of time.

That's what Terry was, and will always be...a part of us. He is an image in our minds, a voice in our heads, a presence from long ago that never went away.

Thank you Trooper Terry. Thank you Terry Sams for being a character, for being committed to this community, for being a constant presence in the CSRA.

We will always love you.

Trooper Terry...gone but never, ever forgotten. We know that you all join us in sending out our love to the Sams family. Funeral arrangements are being handled by Posey Funeral Home. At this time there are no specifics, but we will update you as that information comes in.

If you would like to send cards for the family, you can mail them to:
Television Park
1336 Augusta West Parkway
Augusta, GA 30909

Click here to read a special editorial about Trooper Terry by former WAGT News Manager, Mark Rosen.

Click here to view the Trooper Terry Reunion Shows

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Augusta, GA 30909

Telephone: 706.722.6664
Email: talkback6@wjbf.com

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