Samuel Reed Kirk died Feb. 3, 2021. Sam was born to Catherine McBurney Kirk and Samuel I. Kirk on May 14, 1942, in Sierra Madre.
Sam attended Sierra Madre Elementary School, John Marshall Jr. High School, and graduated from Pasadena High School in 1960. He went on to attend the University of Redlands, and graduated in 1964. In addition to his academic success, Sam won numerous awards in pole vaulting. In 1961, he earned the SCIAC League record at 13 feet, 5 inches; in 1963, he was the University of Redlands school record holder at 15 feet, 1-1/4 inches. In 1964, at the Fresno Relays, Sam took first place in the College Division pole vaulting at 16 feet, 3 inches, the best in the world at that time. He went on to try out for the 1966 Olympics pole vaulting team at 17 feet, 1 inch, another world record. What started as seventh grade fun, he took to greater heights becoming an athletic world record holder as a young adult. In 1984, Sam was inducted into the University of Redlands Athletic Hall of Fame in recognition of his pole vaulting achievements.
Sam wore many hats: playing the drums in college; teaching high school for over 30 years; coaching pole vaulters; and being a Christian role model; but his most important and favorite hat was being a dad. He was married to his loving wife Jane for over 45 years.
Sam is preceded in death by his eldest son, Eric Shane Kirk.
He is survived by his son Matthew Reed Kirk and his wife Sarah; his son Samuel Wade Kirk; and granddaughters Emma and Hannah Kirk. He is also survived by his two sisters, Carolyn, and her husband Bob Winter, and Marilyn Meyers; as well as his nephews Byron Meyers, and his wife Tiffany, and Gregg Winter and his wife, Elise.
Services to be held on Thursday, July 22, at 11 a.m. at Grace Point Fellowship, 34784 Yucaipa Blvd. Luncheon to follow.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Grace Point Fellowship missionaries.