Sam F. Long, 91, former President and Business Manager of Operating Engineers Local 101, passed away November 27, 2019 in Houston, Texas. He was born and raised in Kansas City, Missouri, graduated from Manual High School and attended Central Business College. As a World War II Veteran, Sam served in the U.S. Army in the Infantry during 1946 - 1947. Early in his career, Long worked as an auditor for Skelly Oil. He joined the Operating Engineers in 1950, working for various contractors as a crane operator.
By 1962, his interests turned to labor management and union members needs. In 1975, he was elected Financial Secretary and by 1979-1980, he was elected Business Manager and President. Sam was instrumental in starting The United Labor Credit Union as well as establishing a pension plan for the Local 101 members.
He took on a higher political profile in 1982, serving as Chairman of the Jackson County Democratic Committee. Sam was a natural leader. He was recognized and respected for his labor, political and civic activities both locally and nationally. Later, he was appointed to the Planned Industrial Expansion Authority. He served as a member of the Advisory Board of the Kansas City, Missouri Housing Authority, a member of the of the Executive Board of the Kansas City Labor Management Committee; a Board Member of the Opportunities Industrialization Center in Kansas City; a Board Member of the Kansas City, Missouri Building Codes Board of Appeals as well as President of the Greater Kansas City Building and Construction Trades Council.
In 1984, he was instrumental in forming the Institute for Labor Studies, a part of the Department of Economics at the University of Missouri, Kansas City. Sam was recognized by the Kansas City, Kansas Mayor, Jack Reardon for his efforts in improving conditions for working people. Reardon declared May 31, 1984 as Sam F. Long Day. Sam truly represented the UNICO motto of Service Above Self and in 1988, he was named Citizen of the Year by the Kansas City Mens Chapter of UNICO National, an Italian American organization established to, among other things, engage in charitable works, support higher education and perform patriotic deeds. He served as Chairman of United Way in 1990. In 1992, Long retired from Local 101 as Business Manager and President.
He belonged to St. Bernadettes Catholic Church, Houston, TX and was a member of the Knights of Columbus. Sam was preceded in death by his father, Frank Long, his mother Lela Grace Bean, sisters Viola Long and Margaret Barrett and his sons Sam and Richard. He is survived by his wife, Linda Genova Long, step-daughter Kimberly McAllister (John); daughters Allison Taylor (Robin), Kimberly Shea (Jim), Valerie Willis (Doug), his nephew Robert Taylor, and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
A Celebration of Life Memorial Service will be held Saturday, December 14, 2019 at 11:00am at Muehlebach Funeral Care, 6800 Troost Ave., Kansas City, Missouri 64131. Interment will follow at Forest Hill & Calvary Cemetery, 6901 Troost Ave., Kansas City, MO 64131. Honorary pallbearers are Dr. James A. DiRenna Jr. and Meghan Tallman. John Thornberry played an important father figure in Sams life. In lieu of flowers, donations in Sams memory may be made to The Boys and Girls Club, 4001 Blue Parkway #102, Kansas City, Missouri 64130. Condolences may be left at www.MuehlebachChapel.com
Celebration of Life Muehlebach Funeral Home
Saturday, December 14, 2019
6800 Troost AvenueKansas City, Missouri
Interment immediately following in Forest Hill and Calvary Cemetery