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Samuel Joseph Alderete

November 14, 1920 - November 6, 2020
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Topsham- Samuel Joseph Alderete, Major, US Army, Retired, age 99, died peacefully at his residence at Cadigan Lodge in Topsham on Friday November 6th.  

He was born on November 14th, 1920 in Mesa Arizona to Crispin and Angelita Alderete.

He married Helen Marie Erspamer on September 22nd, 1952.  She died August 2nd, 2002.  He is survived by his five children:

Daughter Susanne Alderete Caron and her husband Alan Caron of Cape Coral FL, and grandson Daniel Spicer of Somerville MA. Son Gregory Alderete and wife Katherine, of Steilacoom WA, granddaughters Hannah Alderete of Los Angeles CA and Mariah Alderete of Seattle, WA. Daughter Mary Alderete of Arlington VA and grandson Nicholas Epperson of Virginia Beach VA. Daughter Angela of Topsham and daughter Nancy Alderete Davis and husband Ronnie Davis of Fayetteville NC.

Sam served his country during World War II and the Korean War.  As a young warrant office in World War II he fought his way across France, Belgium and Germany with the 980th Field Artillery Battalion.  He survived the infamous Battle of the Bulge, directly contributing to the liberation of France and Belgium.   When questioned about his service record, he humbly said he "soldiered in combat with his brothers in arms, many of whom did not return.”

His military accolades include the Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medals, Army Commendations with Clusters and French Legion of Honor, awarded on July 14th, 2015.

Sam earned an undergraduate degree from the University of Nebraska in US and Military History, a Master’s in Education from Boston University and a Master of Arts in International Relations from the University of Southern California.

After retiring from the Army, he relocated to Topsham as Director of Education at the Brunswick Naval Air Station.  He retired from the Civil Service in 2007.  He was an avid reader, historian and life-long learner.  He enjoyed gardening, music and eating dessert!

Sam was a dedicated supporter of the Spindleworks, 7 Lincoln St, Brunswick, ME 04011 and the Special Olympics, 125 John Roberts Rd, South Portland, ME 04106.  In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to these worthy causes.

A private service will be held for the family. Interment will be at Arlington National Cemetery at a later date.

Arrangements are by Stetson’s Funeral Home, 12 Federal Street, Brunswick where memorial condolences may be expressed at