Samuel Levi Helmuth, 27, of Idaho Falls, Idaho, formerly of Tony and Richland Center, passed away on Saturday, July 17, 2021, near Soldotna, Alaska due to injuries sustained in an automobile accident while on vacation with friends.
Sam was born on the cold, early morning of Jan. 15, 1994, at Meriter Hospital in Madison, to parents Kevin Helmuth and Sara Jahr Helmuth and an extended family who most eagerly awaited his arrival.
Sam was adventurous from the start. Early on he had a love for everything outdoors and all that swam, creeped, or crawled, with his most favorite being frogs, his collection of toy dinosaurs, and tacos. Sam enjoyed visits with Great Grandma Helmuth, wheelbarrow rides with Uncle Wilbur and tractor rides with Uncle Harold at the farm. Sam was always at the door ready to go swimming at Aunt Gloria's and play with his cousins. He was most excited for the arrival of his little brother Jacob in the spring of 1998. Finally, he had someone to share his adventures with.
Sam's adventures continued on in Richland Center with many new friends and exploits. He loved working as a life guard at the pool and his special friend Alex Toney. He would load up the Man-Van with buddies and they would head out for Freak Fest in Madison or toilet paper half of Richland County on homecoming weekends. Other weekends he was off bass fishing with Doug and Zach or just visiting with Grandma and Grandpa Helmuth. He loved sports and played football, basketball, and track in middle and high school.
After high school, Sam continued his education at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire where he made more new friends and had even wilder adventures. Great times were had at the dorms, the house on Water Street, and working at the Housing Authority. He graduated in the winter of 2016 with a bachelor of science degree in Geology. After graduation, Sam accepted a position with the United States Geological Survey, working at Idaho National Laboratories in the water quality sampling program. It was hard to have Sam so far away from home, but he absolutely loved his work and all those he worked with at INL and the USGS.
Sam was most at home exploring the mountains of Idaho, Utah, Wyoming, and everything west, especially the Tetons. New passions were tying flies, chasing cutthroats, skiing Book the Bay, and piloting the Shaggn' Wagon at the Drummond Bar Stool races. Of course there was his love of the Bucks and everything Milwaukee. One of his dreams was to move close enough to Milwaukee to get season tickets and attend every game.
Sam was an amazing self taught artist and musician. He could play nearly anything set before him, except the accordion. He did not share in his father's affinity for polka. His favorite instrument was the guitar. We were all amazed at how talented he was with the guitar, and couldn't wait for him to share his new creations. There are many great memories of when he would be home, playing late into the night at Jake's house. He wrote many songs which we will cherish forever.
Sam is survived by his parents, father Kevin Helmuth (Luanne Zuck) of Stone Lake; mother Sara (Jahr) Helmuth (Rick Day) of Richland Center; taller little brother Jacob Helmuth of Richland Center; grandparents Glenn and Katie (Bontrager) Helmuth of Glen Flora; Aunts and Uncles Dale and Gloria (Jahr) Couey of Deerfield; Stan and Kathy (Lisney) Jahr of Richland Center; Dale and Angie (Pierick) Jahr of Deerfield; Kristine Jahr of Deerfield; Mike and Kari Kant of Fitchburg; Doug Helmuth of Glen Flora; Gene and Michelle (Helmuth) Nelson of Glen Flora; Eric and Malinda (Helmuth) Amidon of Glen Flora; special great uncles Wilbur Helmuth of Madison and Harold Helmuth of Glen Flora; and many special cousins.
Sam was preceded in death by grandparents Paul and Charlene (Adler) Jahr of Richland Center; his beloved dog Zoey; Earl the Hamster; and his pet beaver at a favorite fishing spot somewhere in the wilds of Idaho.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m., Saturday, July 31, at Pratt Memorial Chapel with burial to follow in the Richland Center Cemetery. Visitation will be held from 4-8 p.m., Friday, July 30, at Pratt Memorial Chapel and again at Pratt Memorial Chapel on Saturday, July 31, from 10 a.m. until the time of service at 11 a.m.
Pratt Funeral and Cremation Service, Richland Center, is assisting the family with their arrangements. Visit prattfuneralservice.com.