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Sam Church

AKA Samuel Morgan Church, Jr.

Born: 20-Sep-1936
Birthplace: Matewan, WV
Died: 14-Jul-2009
Location of death: Bristol, VA
Cause of death: Complications of Surgery

Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Labor Leader

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: UMW President, 1979-82

Born to a mine supervisor who took a second career as a barber, Sam Church gained early employment in a sugar factory and eventually, at the Clinchfield Coal Company. By 1973 he had become a UMW field representative, allying himself with President Arnold Miller. He became a Vice President in 1977, and Miller's ill health catapulted Church into the Presidency of the union. Although a two-month nationwide strike was successful, he was neither a strong nor popular President, and Richard Trumka defeated Church in the union's 1982 election. After the Presidency, Church remained active in union affairs.

Father: Samuel Church
Mother: Helen Cook
Sister: Barbara
Sister: Patricia
Brother: Gary
Wife: (div., one son, two daughters)
Son: Samuel III
Daughter: Melissa Lawson
Daughter: Suzanne
Wife: Patti Page (attorney, m. 1978, until his death, one son)
Son: Nathaniel

    Virginia Coal Miners' Political Action Committee Coordinator
    United Mine Workers of America President (1979-82)
    United Mine Workers of America VP (1977-79)
    United Mine Workers of America Deputy Dir., Collective Bargaining (1976-77)
    United Mine Workers of America Int'l. Field Representative (1975-76)
    United Mine Workers of America Field Representative, District 28 (1973-75)
    Clinchfield Coal Company (1965-73)
    Risk Factors: Parkinson's


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