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Sam Aguiniga - August 28, 2010

Salvador “Sam” Aguiniga, 82, of Box Elder, S.D. was born to Juan and Epemenia (Mascarenas) Aguiniga on June 14, 1928 in Sedgwick. He died at his home on Aug. 28, 2010.

He served his country as a Navy frogman in the Korean War and was a proud recipient of the Purple Heart.

He married Ramona Duarte Sept. 30, 1950 in Ocean Side, Calif. and enjoyed raising her children as well as their own son.

Sam received a master’s degree in mechanical engineering with a minor in physiology. He accomplished many occupations and goals in life, namely farming in Nebraska, working for the Department of Defense in security in Sidney, Neb., general foreman at Rocky Mountain Arsenal in Denver, director of the hospital in Alliance, Neb. for 15 years and plant manager at EAFB Hospital for 10 years.

He retired Dec. 31, 1991. After retirement, they traveled in their motor home and on their three-wheel motorcycle, making many friends along the way.

Sam was a problem solver and always put others’ wants and needs before his own. He enjoyed helping young people and felt there was hope for everyone. He loved his family equally and enjoyed life. He loved the Lord and the Catholic church and volunteered to help those in need. Sam was a life member of VFW and belonged to numerous organizations, from which he received many certificates and awards.

Sam was preceded in death by his parents; daughters, Rachel Richey and Mary Jane Becker; brothers, Paul, Joe and David Aguiniga; and sister-in-law, Rita Aguiniga, David’s wife.

He is survived by his wife, Ramona Aguiniga of Box Elder; sons, Charley Cordova and wife Dolores of Fallbrook, Calif. and John Aguiniga and wife Gloria of Rapid City, S.D.; daughter, Martha Cordova of Box Elder; brothers, Vonnie Aguiniga and wife Elsie of Texas, Frank Aguiniga and wife Elvera of Colorado and Raymond Aguiniga and wife Mary Lou of Nebraska; sisters, Aurelia Vigil of Minnesota, Elvira Dominguez and husband John of Nebraska, Dolores Martinez and husband Max of Colorado, Mary Morelas and husband Frank of Colorado and Lupe Martinez of Washington; sons-in-law, Roland Becker and George Richey, both of Colorado; 18 grandchildren; and numerous great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren.

Mass of Christian Burial was held Sept. 2 at Cathedral of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Rapid City with Father Ed Vanorny as celebrant. Interment was at Black Hills National Cemetery near Sturgis, S.D. with military honors by VFW Post 1273 of Rapid City.

A memorial has been established to Cathedral of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Rapid City, S.D.