Cover photo for Samuel Northrop, Jr.'s Obituary
Samuel Northrop, Jr. Profile Photo

Samuel Northrop, Jr.

June 26, 1931 — August 24, 2023

Ponte Vedra Beach

Samuel Northrop, Jr.




Samuel Northrop Jr., loving husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, passed away on August 24, 2023, in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. Sam was originally from North Carolina. He and his wife, Mary Lou, moved to the Jacksonville area from Winston Salem N.C. in 1987.

Sam was born in Wilmington N.C on June 26, 1931. He spent most of his younger life growing up in Greenville, N.C. where he attended Greenville Public Schools. At Duke University where he received his BA in Finance, he was active in the Chanticleer newspaper, Sigma Chi Fraternity, and the Duke Glee Club. It was also at Duke, during his junior year and while serving as Commencement Marshall, he met a beautiful woman and fellow Commencement Marshall, Mary Lou Jacobs. She would eventually become his wife of 64 years.

Following graduation from Duke University, Sam served in the US Navy from 1953-1956. He served as Operations Officer aboard the destroyer USS Robinson. After active service, Sam continued for 20 years in the Navy Reserves, retiring with the rank of Commander.

 In 1956, Sam and Mary Lou moved to North Carolina where he began his lifelong career in banking and finance. He was with Wachovia Bank & Trust Company for 30 years, retiring in 1986 as Group Vice President. In the Fall of 1986, Sam retired from Wachovia and immediately began a second career with Barnett Banks of Florida in Jacksonville. He was with Barnett Banks for 10 years, retiring in 1996 as Director of Commercial Banking. He served as the Chairman of the American Bankers Association – Financial Institutions Division and was an active member of the ABA Payment System Policy Board. Sam and Mary Lou lived in the Deerwood community and were instrumental in the acquisition of Deerwood from Gate Petroleum and converting the club to an equity membership model.  The couple eventually settled in at Ponte Vedra Beach at Vicar’s Landing in 2013.

Sam lived a life of service. The service he held closest to his heart was to his church. He was a life-long Episcopalian holding many different positions and filling multiple roles throughout his life. He served as a vestryman and choir member. He was Lay Eucharistic Minister as well as holding the office of President of Christ Church Foundation Board of Trustees.

He organized the United Way in Washington, N.C and served as President and Campaign Chairman for the United Way in both Washington, N.C and in Raleigh. While living in Washington, he was Chairman of the Washington School Board. After moving to Raleigh, He was President of The Raleigh Little Theater and served on the Board of Directors for The Carolina Country Club. He was also on the Board of Directors for Deerwood Country Club in Jacksonville, FL., holding the office of President from 1999-2002. From 1996-2005, he read to the blind on the radio on station WJCT.

Sam is survived by his children Patricia (Kevin) Callahan, Susan Boase, Sam (Cathy) Northrop III, Catherine Schwartz, thirteen grandchildren and one great grandchild.

He was predeceased by his loving wife of 64 years, Mary Lou, his brother Harriss, and sister Marietta.

A Memorial Service will be held at 11:00 am, Saturday, September 16, 2023, at Christ Episcopal Church in Ponte Vedra Beach. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Christ Church Foundation, Vicar’s Members Trust, or to any worthy cause of your choice.

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Past Services

Memorial Service

Saturday, September 16, 2023

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Eastern time)

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