Merlin "Sam" Fredrick Herrig was born on September 5, 1934, the son of Walter and Florence (Tellgren) Herrig in Odebolt, Iowa. He attended multiple schools in Crawford County. Following his education, he moved to Minnesota and worked with his brother, Earl. Sam enlisted in the United States Army on June 23, 1953, and served until his honorable discharge on March 23, 1956. Following his Active-Duty Service, he traveled throughout the Midwest and worked various road construction jobs. He later enlisted in the Iowa Army National Guard.
On May 2, 1964, Sam was united in marriage to Joan Lauretta Tech at the United Presbyterian Church in Denison. The couple continued living in the Denison area and were blessed with six children: Becky, Heidi, Holly, Larry, Gary and Jodie.
Sam had an incredibly strong work ethic and held three or four jobs at a time while raising Golden Retrievers on their farm. He worked at Farmland for over 25 years. Following retirement, he worked numerous jobs in the community. Sam was a member of the United Presbyterian Church, as well as, the Denison American Legion Post 8.
He enjoyed going to the casino with his daughters. You could always hear the RFD channel playing in the background of his home. Some might call him the neighborhood watch as he loved driving around town. He always had chewing gum in his pocket to share. Sam was a family guy who would do anything for his kids. He cherished spending time with his grandchildren and watching them participate in their various sports and activities. He looked forward to the visits from his great-grandchildren.
Sam passed away on May 6, 2022, at the Crawford County Memorial Hospital at the age of 87 years, eight months and one day.
Sam was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Joan Herrig in 2006; siblings: Earl "Joe" Herrig, Maydell Brandt, Myrna Voege, Delbert "Louie" Herrig and infant brother, Darrell Herrig; and son-in-law, Allen Namanny. He is survived by his children: Becky (Hobert) Rogers of Denison, Heidi Herrig of Denison, Holly Namanny (Victor Arredondo) of Denison, Larry (Michelle) Herrig of Denison, Gary (Shelly) Herrig of Denison, and Jodie (Alejandro) Vazquez of Denison; step-daughter, Deb (Larry) Reis Pieper of Carroll; 14 grandchildren: Brent, Brandon, Bryan, Derek, Brooke, Ashlyn, Lauren, Tessa, Tori, Taya, Austin, Samantha, Lexi, and Melody; 15 great-grandchildren; sister, Ruth Brink of Council Bluffs; several nieces and nephews; and many other relatives and friends.
The visitation will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Monday, May 9, 2022, at the Huebner Funeral Home in Denison. His funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, May 10, 2022 at the United Presbyterian Church in Denison. Interment with military honors will follow in Crawford Heights Memory Garden. Memorials may be directed to the family.
"Uncle Sam was quite the character, always quick with his wit and ready for a laugh.. I loved taunting him by calling him ?Uncle Merlin?. What a blessing for David and I to be part of the Herrig Clan and have so many wonderful memories that include Sam."
Sam was a very nice guy always enjoyed a visit with him. He always teased some and then smiled. Deepest condolences to the family he will be missed. "
"Sam always had a positive additude about everything. He will be missed hug's and prayers for the family Sharon Irwin"
"Always enjoyed visiting with Sam when I'd see him. Such a pleasant fellow. Deepest sympathies to his family. "
"Remembering Uncle Sam and Aunt Joan when my Dad, Bob, passed in 2004. They were so comforting during a very difficult time. Sam was such a sweet man and he will be missed. I know Aunt Joan welcomed him and gave him a big hug. Love always, Christine"
"Remembering when Uncle Sam and Aunt Joan came to Germany to visit us with Betty and Dad. He is missed.
Dennis and Lisa Herrig"