As the saying goes, all good things must come to an end.
As much as we have spent the last several months cheering on Samuel Bean after he saw his boyhood dreams turn from bright and promising to silent and dark and then, thankfully, back again—at least in spirit—we’ve come to the end of Sam’s timeline. Not that that means we won’t review any more information on his story, but for now, we’ve got to bid a remarkable man adieu.
How Sam’s story came to its end, I don’t really know. He was long gone before I ever showed up on the scene. All I knew of him at the start was from what family members told me—and, understandably, no one likes to talk about death or dying.
That doesn’t mean I never took the opportunity to search online for what information I could find. Of course you know I would do that!
What I found amazing, though, was the lack of any final stories on Sam in the very newspaper which had spent over three decades breathlessly broadcasting every tidbit of Sam’s life that could be printed.
Perhaps this lack of remembrance was owing to a glitch in online archives of the Oakland Tribune. I’ll be circumspect and give them the benefit of the doubt. Up to this point, I’m struggling to find any mention of Sam’s passing in his local newspaper.
Back in his hometown, though, the small newspaper there got the scoop on the mighty Trib. Maybe it was their turn to go all breathless. After all, this was their boy they were talking about—born and raised in San Mateo County…well, and just across the county line in Palo Alto in those fateful early teen years.
Whether the San Mateo Times was able to resist the urge to employ hyperbole, I’m not sure. The editorial tone seemed to convey pride in their hometown boy. A few of the details on Sam’s life seem to fall neatly into place. Others, though—well, let’s just say, “That’s news to me.”
Funeral services for Samuel Bean, 57, a native of Redwood City and a world-famous chess champion, were held today at the Fowler-Anderson funeral home chapel in Alameda. Interment was at Mountain View cemetery.Bean, a resident of 1807 Santa Clara avenue, Alameda, died Saturday in Merritt hospital, Oakland. He lost his sight and hearing when he was 13, yet became an accomplished chess player. At the time of his death he was carrying on 13 games by mail. He missed out on the world chess championship for the blind by only two victories during his prime. He was a salesman for products made by the California Industries of the Blind in Oakland.