April 8, 1941-Feb. 15, 2024

Samuel Alvin Reber, 82 years of age, passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on Feb. 15, 2024, and was reunited with his eternal companion Pat, on Valentine’s Day (Nevada time)

He was born on April 8, 1941, in St. George, Utah, to Ralston Virden Reber and Myrtle Jensen, of Mesquite, Nevada.

He was sealed in the St. George Temple to his sweetheart Patricia Lee Edlefsen on Aug. 20, 1960. They resided in Mesquite until their passing.

Sam was the fourth of seven children born to Ralston and Myrtle. He was a tender-hearted boy from the beginning. One story his mother told about him was that “he was at the dining table and an uncle was eating with them. He said, ‘Don’t look at Sam or he will start bawling again.’”

When he was in the third to the fifth grade, he lived with his Grandma Reber during the school year to help her with the chores. He said that she was alone and needed some help. She also helped him with his schoolwork. He had difficulty reading and needed additional support. For Sam, this was the beginning of a life of serving others.

Growing up on the family farm taught him responsibility and a good work ethic which he tried to teach to his children. They all had chores to do and responsibilities on the farm. After the boys had all left the farm, he bought a mechanical bail wagon. When asked why he hadn’t bought one years earlier he said, “It’s not about farming, it’s about raising boys.”

During school, he enjoyed FFA, basketball, boxing, singing and dancing.

In 1958, he met a new teacher in his school who would change his life. Pat (Miss Edlefsen as she was called) was teaching dance and PE at the high school. After they were set up on a date, things began to be serious. His father said to him, “You can’t go wrong marrying a school marm.”  

After their wedding, they moved to Reno, Nevada, where he attended college at the University of Nevada Reno. Since he had dairy experience, he worked several jobs at the University and local dairies. While there he was called into a bishopric and ordained a High Priest at the age of 19. He enjoyed school and did well with Pat’s help. He joined the Sierra Singers, a UNR men’s choir, and was privileged to sing at the World Fair. He enjoyed singing his whole life and sang often in the ward choir and duets with his sister Darlene.

When his father Ralston was hurt and couldn’t take care of the farm on his own, Sam quit school and moved back home to be partners on the farm with his dad.

Sam worked at the local dairies in Mesquite and became a herd manager and breeding technician. Then he became a park manager and cared for the Mesquite City cemetery and local park. He continued to farm and care for the Beaver Dam ranch and the Grape farm at the same time. When Mesquite incorporated, he continued to work for the Clark County Parks, and he went on to manage facilities in Vegas and then the Clark County fairgrounds until his retirement at age 55.

Sam enjoyed hunting, which was one of his favorite activities. With his friend Val Woods, he started The Beaver Dam Guides and Outfitters. He always had horses. He enjoyed breaking them, riding them, roping, hunting on them and driving them. He participated in several wagon trains with his teams of horses. He especially enjoyed the reenactment of the Mormon Trek from Winter Quarters to the Salt Lake Valley. In fact, most of his children and their families were able to join him and Pat at this reenactment.

Sam was a great Dutch-oven cook and liked to share his cooking skills with others, regularly cooking for ward functions and fundraisers. His specialty was Dutch-oven chicken and potatoes and cobbler. His son, Matt has since become the family Dutch-oven expert and continues to use some of his dad’s recipes.

Sam was active in civic affairs and volunteering. He worked for the Clark County ambulance and both the culinary and irrigation water boards. He served as Clark County Farm Bureau president, Clark County ASCCS member and as an Arizona Soil and Water Conservation Committee member.

Sam was active in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, serving as Bishopric counselor and secretary, Sunday School and primary teacher, ward mission leader, home teacher, Stake Sunday school president and high councilman.

Sam and Pat served two full-time missions: Cove Fort in 2000, and Nauvoo, Illinois in 2010. They also served in the St George temple for 12 years.

Sam is survived by his children; Keith (Rebecca) Springville, Utah; Kaelyn (Dan) Spencer of Bloomington, Utah; Van Cluff (Melanie) of Panaca, Nevada; Larry (Jennifer) of Mesquite, Nevada; Matthew (Brandi) of Axtell, Utah, Elizabeth (Aaron) Bleak of Riverton, Utah, as well as 36 grandchildren and 32 great grandchildren, with four on the way. He is also survived by his sisters Darlene Reese of Wells, Nevada, Mary (James) Andrus of Bloomington, Utah, Helen (Wayne) Bunnell of Provo, Utah, and his remaining brother Grant (Kathy) of Far West, Utah, two sisters-in-law, Lynn (Dennis) and Marlene (Glendon) Reber and one brother-in-law, James Edlefsen (Patricia’s brother). 

He is preceded in death by his loving eternal companion Patricia Edlefsen, his parents at Ralston and Myrtle, brothers Dennis and Glendon, grandsons Dane Reber (Larry and Jennifer) and Brett Cluff (Van and Melanie) and great-grandchildren Braxton and Tate.

Services will be held Saturday, Feb. 24, at noon, (Nevada time) at the Mesquite, Nevada Stake Center, 100 N Arrowhead, Mesquite, Nevada.  

A viewing will be held from 9:30-11:30 a.m. prior to the funeral service.

The interment will immediately follow at the Mesquite City Cemetery, 301 Hillside Drive, Mesquite, Nevada.

Arrangements are under the direction of Spilsbury Mortuary, 110 S Bluff St., St. George, 435-673-2454. Family and friends are invited to click here to sign Sam’s online guest book.