Dedicated to being a Dad: "Along the Way"

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Many men consider fatherhood to be their most important role.
But one local man, is especially driven to be the best Dad he can possibly be.

He and his family moved to Rapid Valley from the Rosebud Reservation this past June: seeking better job opportunities and hoping to better their families life.
So what makes this man's story different? We find the answer "Along the Way" in Rapid Valley.

32 year old Sam Farmer started working for the Pennington County Sheriff's Office this past summer, essentially doing maintenance.
Last week he was promoted to Booking Clerk. That's not his final goal. He wants to set an example for his kids.

Sam Farmer says, "I want them to grow up and say, 'My father worked so hard, that I would like to work just as hard.' I would like to be a role model for them, so they can say, 'Hey, I wanna be just like my father.' "

For Sam, family is first. And he has a big family. When you count Sam, his wife Angel, his grandmother Francine, and 6 kids at home, that's 9 people in the house, a family that likes to sing.

Angel Farmer says, "It's busy. It's fun because there's never a dull moment. We're always doing what they're doing, having game night, you know having dinner at the dinner table."

Sam and Angel, have 2 biological children. The other 4 kids in the house are adopted, due to a variety of circumstances, including the death of 2 separate close relatives.

Sam Farmer says, "I don't know it was the right thing to do, because they were my relatives and they had nowhere else to go. And I didn't want them to be homeless, and I also wanted them to be raised in a good environment, a loving caring environment."

So instead of 2 kids at home they have 6, and Angel says Sam is an outstanding Father.
Angel Farmer says, "He's always teaching them. Always you know wanting to do more things with them, wanting to make sure that they're the most comfortable in their lives."

And while being a good father to 6 kids is impressive, it's even more impressive when you consider this: Sam was raised by his mother, Francine Bear Robe, with no father in the house.

Sam Farmer says, "I didn't know him at all I would say. I knew who he was. I carry his last name. but I don't really know him personally or anything."
When the reporter asks, "Still?"
Sam replies, "Still."

So, now it all makes sense: Sam's extraordinary drive to be a good father, and a role model for his children.

Sam Farmer says, "So everything I wished I had as a father growing up, all the things I wished. You know my father being there for me, my father teaching me things, my father loving me, my father caring for me, that's what I give to my children."

Grandma Frankie plays a major role in the family, taking care of the kids until Sam and Angel get home from work.
One of the kids they're now raising is the child of Grandma Frankie's son, Sam's brother, the late Michael Bear Robe, Junior.

Sam Farmer says, "I do not love them different. Just as much as I love my 2 biological children, I love my other children just the same."

Sam says he worked 9 years for the Rosebud Sioux Tribe's Correction Services, most of it as a juvenile detention officer. His goal now is to eventually be a corrections officer here in Pennington County, and eventually a Sheriff's Deputy.

Angel Farmer says, "He came from the bottom. He's just the hardest working man that I know. he's never going to give up and I know it."
And he's never gonna give up on being the best dad he can be. Only now, we know why.

Sam Farmer says, "I'm gonna love them all the same and them all my all and raise them with love, care, compassion, and respect."

Faith is a big part of their family, reading the Bible and saying prayers. Angel also works outside the home as a certified nursing assistant.
It's a happy, but busy home.

If you've met someone cool "Along the Way" please call us or e-mail me at stevel@blackhillsfox.com to let us know.