Doris Elizabeth (Sams) Van Hamme

09/21/1923 — 02/21/2023

From Richland, WA | Born in Bluff City, NY

Graveside Service

Wed, August 9, 2023, 11:00 am
Sunset Gardens
915 Bypass Highway, Richland, WA 99352

Doris Elizabeth (Sams) Van Hamme

Doris Elizabeth (Sams) Van Hamme, 99, of Richland, WA passed away on February 21, 2023. She was born to Helen (Luck) and James Sams on September 21, 1923, in Bluff City, TN.

Doris graduated from Natrona High School in Casper, WY in 1943 where she met Gerard Edmond Van Hamme, a staff sergeant in the Army Air Corps during World War II, attached to a B-29 bombardment squadron. He claimed, “She was the prettiest girl in all of Casper.” They married November 4, 1943, in Scotts Bluff, NE.

Doris enjoyed traveling the world; smiling for husband’s ever-present camera; watching cable news; and taking long walks in the shelter belt. She was hardworking, no nonsense, resilient and willing to help whenever needed. She was a caring mother who loved her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.  She was an excellent cook who loved to feed her family ‘new recipes’ which were always great.

Doris had a long work history starting in the 1940s at the U.S. Army Air Corp PX and the Sunnyside Credit Bureau. In the 1950s and ‘60s she worked at J.C. Penney in Richland.  In the 1960s and ‘70s she was Executive Secretary of the U.S. Selective Service System in Pasco and was also employed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at Ice Harbor Dam.  In the 1970s and ‘80s she worked for the U.S. Department of Energy in Richland, from which she retired in 1985.

She was a member of the First Baptist Church in Richland, WA.

Doris is survived by her Son, Wayne Van Hamme (spouse April) of Longview, WA; Son, Jerry Van Hamme (spouse Tana) of Dallas, Texas; Daughter, Venita Van Hamme Brown (spouse Richard) of Tacoma, WA; 5 grandchildren, Heather Stolberg, Joel Van Hamme, Katie Amrine, Alex Van Hamme & Erica Brown and 7 great grandchildren.

‘Dotty’ was preceded in death by her husband, parents and siblings; her Brother, James Maurice Sams and her Sisters, Genevieve Snyder, Margaret Ferguson, Irene Devlin and Rose Jacques.

A graveside service will be held at Sunset Memorial Gardens in Richland, WA on August 9, 2023, at 11:00 a.m.



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Doris Elizabeth (Sams) Van Hamme

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  • The Members of the National Association of Active and Retired Federal Employees (NARFE) Chapter 1192 fondly remember Doris when she was a member. We send our sincere condolences to Doris’ family. Please contact us if you need any help with Doris’ benefits.
    Faye Vlieger
    Sunshine Chair

    Faye Vlieger
    August 14, 2023
  • Jerry and I were great friends in high school and while attending First Baptist Church. She always made me feel welcome in their home. I was mesmerized by the wonderful butterflies 🦋 on their living room wall. RIP sweet lady

    Rick Herrington
    July 28, 2023
    West Richland
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