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COVID-19 Thwarts 105th Birthday Party for WWII Veteran Resident of Lakewood, Mayor Encourages Sending Cards

Lt. Col. Sam Sachs is 105.


The mayor of Lakewood is calling on the public to send birthday cards to a World War II veteran whose planned 105th birthday celebration later this month has been thwarted by the coronavirus pandemic. Sam Sachs’ senior living home in Lakewood was “planning a fancy 105th birthday celebration for him, but the party now has to be re-imagined because of the coronavirus and the dangers of bringing people together for a gathering,” Mayor Todd Rogers said in a video message. “Because of this, I’d like to ask that we all consider helping with this redesigned 105th birthday party for Sam by writing him a birthday card.”

The cards can be sent to: Mom and Dad’s House, c/o Lt. Col. Sam Sachs, 4340 Conquista Ave., Lakewood, CA 90713. The mayor noted that the cards will be set aside for several days once they are received and then opened with gloves “to be extra careful for Sam,” who will turn 105 on April 26. The city is working with Sachs’ senior living home on additional ways the community can help celebrate “Sam’s special milestone birthday,” Rogers added. In a video posted on YouTube — titled Sam Sachs 105 BDAY Wish — in which the centenarian is dressed in a military uniform, he noted that a birthday party was in the works “but the virus took charge.”

“Now that this has been canceled, I am sending this out to all of you … to send me a birthday card to take (the) place of the event that should have happened at the birthday party,” said Sachs, a onetime U.S. Army paratrooper who went on to become a teacher after completing his military service. “Now I am wondering how many birthday cards I will get,” he said. “I hope I get many of them and I’m also asking our president to send me a card also — what a thrill that would be.” Ivonne Meader, who owns the senior living home where Sachs lives, said she had planned a “very big party” that would have included Sachs’ family members traveling to the Southland from out of state. She said the pandemic forced her to change course and launch the birthday card drive that had garnered about 50 to 60 cards from people in California, Nevada, Oregon New York, South Carolina and Florida as of Friday afternoon. Hopes are high for Sachs to get cards from throughout the world, including homemade ones from children, she said. “He wants a lot of cards,” Meader said. “This is a big milestone for him.” A surprise “car parade” in front of the house is also in the works for Sachs’ birthday, said Meader, who described the military veteran as “the oldest client I’ve ever had” and “very, very sharp.”

  • Marcy at 100 YO says:

    Mayor Todd Rogers | [email protected]

    Mayor Rogers, thanks for publishing this. Happy 105th Birthday to Sam.

    Parents looked in Lakewood to buy their first home, 1948, but bought in Downey, as Lakewood lots were only 5,000 Sq Ft ; Downey Lots were 10,000 Sq Ft.

    Lakewood homes were around: $7500, Downey home was $10,500, close of escrow was within few hours after signing to purchase. Parents bought their home in Downey on 12/24/1948, closed escrow and moved in the same day, Mom cooked Turkey dinner the next day. PITI: $100 month.

    Downey home was built/financed by Zyler Bros. The Downey home, did not have built in dishwasher, but the Lakewood model homes had built in dishwasher and stainless steel kitchen counter tops. Downey had more custom homes, Lakewood had fine tract homes: Back Yard Garage and Homes with attached front garages. Downey homes were starting to intro Dens-Family Rms during this era, Lakewood mainly developed 2-3 bedrooms homes, few with in-suite bathroom in the master bedroom corner. Lakewood tract homes were 1 story.

    Then came Lakewood Country Club and Lakewood Village, some streets here belong to Lakewood, other belong to Long Beach, Ca. Both areas are fine examples of the wonderful custom homes which came to Lakewood. Tract homes being built in Lakewood were quickly sold to vets using their special VA Loans for new housing, some entertained no down payments and low low interest.

    Latter in the 60’s, came section of East Lakewood, developed lot of the dairy and crop farms to housing developments. There were no 605/91 freeways, 710 Freeway did exist, along with the center grass meridians.

    Had some relatives purchase their first home, behind Marie Calendars Pie, same year Chevrolet introduced Monte Carlo Cars, and another friend purchased the new car year for Chevrolet Caprice and settled in Lakewood County Club.

    Lakewood Country Club was home to many physicians who wanted minimalist architecture homes and practiced out of Long beach Hospitals, to stay within the mandate 5-10 ml radius of their employer.

    Major employer for many family in homes in greater Lakewood area was McDonald Douglas, which latter became Boeing and today, most of that has disappeared. Development of Lakewood Mall and fallout basement, further enhanced the city of Lakewood and brought in lot of tax revenues, along with Park Chevrolet across the street from mall. Most of Lakewood purchased their cars in Long Beach from the great Salta Family of dealerships.

    Today, many residents from Artesia-Cerritos- La Palma frequent the famous H & H Landscape Nursery on Lakewood Blvd, just south of the 91 Freeway. Lakewood Blvd was also home to the start-up of Gemco Locations.

    Today, Lakewood is home to many 2nd and 3rd generation families, coming back to live and raise families. Most of the tree lined streets still have their orig. character, plus Lakewood Home and Garden Annual Beautification Awards. Lakewood has alot of housing diversities: SFR, Mobiles, Duplexes, Apartments, Condo, Planned Communities, Alleys, CDS Streets, pedestrian sidewalks, sm. estate homes, pedestrian bridges, home to LASD-LWm


    Happy Birthday Sam and many more.

  • Lakewood Beautiful says:

    Nominate yourself or a neighbor for Lakewood Beautiful

    Nominate your house! Nominate a neighbor’s house!

    The Lakewood Beautiful program is ready to recognize Lakewood residents who take extra care to keep their homes and yards (and local neighborhoods) looking great!

    Studies show that home upkeep and beautification by caring, committed residents keeps crime rates low and property values healthy, thereby benefiting the whole community.

    You can help honor those Lakewood residents who go “above and beyond” to keep their home and yards looking beautiful.

    Learn about the three ways to honor your home or a neighbor’s home in the Lakewood Beautiful program