Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 8/29/19
A Celebration of Peter Samson’s Life will be held on Friday, Aug. 30 at 11 AM at Wayne Presbyterian Church.
A reception will follow at St David’s Golf Club, 845 Radnor Street Road, Wayne.
Mr. Samson, 67, passed away Saturday, Aug. 17 following a bicycle accident Friday near the Massachusetts border in Little Compton, R.I.
Mr. Samson was an indisputable leader in the Philadelphia lacrosse scene for three decades, founding and building the successful Radnor Youth Lacrosse program for boys while also creating the Katie Samson Festival and Foundation, annually the largest single-day high school event int he nation.
Mr. Samson was inducted into the Eastern Pennsylvania Chapter of the US Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 2017 and also was honored with the prestigious Founders Circle Award for founding new programs at the 2009 US Lacrosse Convention.
Mr. Samson’s lacrosse accomplishments are many, including serving as the founder, director and coach of Radnor Youth Lacrosse for close to 30 years.
Mr. Samson also was past president of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Youth Lacrosse Association (SEPYLA). The Katie Samson Festival (KSF), about to enter its 20th year, was created to raise money and awareness for spinal cord research and its causes in the name of his daughter, Katie. The Festival has helped the Foundation raise $2 million since its inception in 2001.
Mr. Samson also served as an assistant boys’ coach at Radnor High this year for the first time. The team reached the state semifinals. He also coached the A1 Radnor youth team to a championship in 2019.
Mr. Samson is a graduate of Phillips Academy/Andover (1969) and received his B. A. from University of Pennsylvania (1973) while playing both Division I Ice Hockey and Lacrosse. He went on to earn a J.D. from New England School of Law (1976) where he served as the Managing Editor of the New England Law Review.
Mr. Samson enjoyed a successful career as an attorney, spanning over four decades with several highly respected law firms; with a lengthy partnership at White and Williams, LLP and finishing of counsel with Cipriani and Warner. His practice focused on medical malpractice and defending universities in a variety of litigation and education law matters, after starting as an attorney in the Philadelphia Public Defenders’ Office. He taught trial practice and litigation skills extensively for the National Institute of Trial Advocacy, Pennsylvania Bar Institute, Pennsylvania Defense Institute and the Philadelphia Association of Defense Counsel, of which he is a past President. He chaired the Hearing Committee for the Disciplinary Board of Pennsylvania for nine years and served as an Adjunct Professor for Temple University Law School. He was selected in a survey of his peers as a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer by Law and Politics Magazine for 2004-2006-2015, and was recognized as a Top-Rated Lawyer in Healthcare base on a rating by Martindale-Hubbell.
Mr. Samson was also involved in numerous charitable endeavors, serving as the Magee representative for the Thomas Jefferson University Board, Board Member of Magee Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation, Philadelphia Lacrosse Association, Katie Samson Lacrosse Foundation, and Wayne Presbyterian Church.
Mr. Samson loved spending summers with his family in the coastal town of Westport, MA, and enjoying winter ski trips to Mad River Glen in Waitsfield, VT; a Samson family stronghold. For all he gave to the community, he provided so much for his family. He had just retired and was looking forward to spending more time with his family as well as wood working projects, golf and traveling for cycling and football watching.
He will be remembered for his endless conversations with his dogs, his trademark rendition of “Surfer Bird’ by the Trashmen, double knee drops, love of Motown music; his uncontrollable cackling laugh, his enthusiasm for Eagles football, and the ability to fall fast asleep in a noisy room with a spy novel on his lap. Most of all, we will remember Peter for his affection for people and zest for life. If you knew him well (as many do) he poked innocent fun every chance he got and was happy to receive the same treatment.
Mr. Samson is survived by his loving wife of 26 years, Lynne Coughlin Samson, his children David, 43, (wife Kate), Brian, 41, (wife Gyll), Katie, 39, Molly, 25, and his first wife, Banny Ackerman; and his brothers Charles, Hugh and David. He was also a doting “grandpa” and “tickle monster” to his four grandchildren; Beatrice, Sebastien, Clare and Grace.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Peter’s honor to the following organizations: Magee Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation, 1513 Race Street, Philadelphia, PA 19102 (https://mageerehab.org/get-involved/fundraising-events/), or, Radnor High School Scholarship Fund, PO Box 8244, Radnor, PA 19087 (www.radnorscholarshipfund.com) will be appreciated.