Samuel Day Quy, of Woodbury, MN, passed away unexpectedly at M Health Fairview Southdale Hospital in Edina, MN on January 31, 2021.
Sam is survived by his wife of 34 years, Jeri Gavic Quy and daughter Olivia Quy, of Woodbury, MN; son Russell Quy (Alexis) of Brooklyn, NY; daughter Kimberly Quy of Belle Plaine, MN; sister Ginger Chitwood of Tulsa, OK; brother-in -law Jorv (Jaci) Gavic of River Falls, WI; and sisters-in-law, Jean Gavic of Hudson, WI and Kari (John) Delaney of Venice, FL (Stillwater, MN), as well as two grandchildren, Estella Quy and Jacob Quy. He is also survived by one aunt, several nieces, nephews and cousins.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Glenn Quy and Melissa Butler; brothers, David Quy and Glenn Quy; and his first wife, Judy Justis Quy, mother of his two older children.
Sam was born August 29, 1944 in Waycross, GA, after which he relocated to other states, as well as internationally to the Philippines, while growing up in a military family. He graduated from Highland Park High School, Topeka, KS in 1963. After attending Fort Scott Junior College on a football scholarship for a short time, he transferred to Washburn University in Topeka, KS and graduated in 1968 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Math and Science (double major) and Physics (minor).
Sam began a long, storied career in the pharmaceutical industry as he joined Pfizer in 1968, holding positions in field sales and hospital sales in Wichita, KS and Kansas City, KS. He joined Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. as a hospital sales representative in Kansas City, KS in 1974. He became a district sales manager in Cincinnati, Ohio and later spent four years as Director of Specialty Sales at the company’s corporate headquarters in Ridgefield, CT -- developing and implementing the company’s Government Affairs Department and Managed Care Department. He returned to the field in senior district sales management positions in primary care and specialty product sales in Seattle, WA and finally, Minneapolis, MN, where he retired in 2009. Throughout his career, Sam’s most basic philosophy as a manager was to “hire good people and don’t get in their way.” He did just that and found great joy in mentoring and inspiring others to reach their potential. Upon retiring, Sam stated, “The pharmaceutical industry has changed a great deal over the last 40 years, but I really enjoyed going to work every day.”
Sam was an avid reader and could discuss almost any author and most books brought up in conversation in great detail. He had an incredible memory, was a captivating storyteller and could recite poetry he had memorized over his lifetime with ease. As a young boy, Sam read about the Boundary Waters in Minnesota, and his childhood dream was to one day visit. It was ironic, in moving to Minnesota to be near in-laws in 1998, that his childhood dream of visiting the Boundary Waters would also be realized. During his 23 years in Minnesota, he was able to visit the Boundary Waters in northern Minnesota many times. He also loved family vacations in Ely, as well as hiking, fishing, camping, biking, and casual kayaking and canoeing with family and friends. He was a true adventurer. His wit, humor and intelligence brought smiles to so many people, and left an indelible impression on those fortunate enough to call him family or friend. His greatest joy was to spend time with family and friends. He was active and enjoyed his life to its fullest up to his very last days.
A summer Celebration of Life is being planned, followed by a private burial at St. John’s Lutheran Cemetery in Spring Valley, WI, with the exact date to be announced in the coming months.
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