Rev. Samuel Matthias Clark Jr.

The Rev. Samuel Matthias Clark Jr., 83, of Rabun Gap, passed away Wednesday, May 4, 2016, at Habersham County Medical Center.

He was born in Gainesville on Sept. 28, 1932, and was the son of the late Samuel Matthias Clark Sr. and Mildred Palmour Clark.

Rev. Clark is survived by his loving wife, Betty Claire Manning Clark; one son, David Michael Clark of Portland, Oregon; a sister, India Clark Benton of Burlington, North Carolina; two nieces, Allison Goss of Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Becky Benton of Mountain View, California; one nephew, Christopher Benton of Scottsdale, Arizona; and two grandchildren of Gibsons, British Columbia, Canada.

He grew up in Macon and graduated from Lanier High School in Bibb County. He was a graduate of Emory University and while there he was a member of Phi Delta Theta Fraternity, and inducted into Phi Beta Kappa and the Senior Honor Society. When in Savannah, he received the School Bell Award and the prestigious Oglethorpe Trophy. In 2003, he won the Turman Alumni Service Award given to recognized distinguished alumni demonstrating “exceptional volunteer leadership.” 

The Rev. Clark received his Masters Degree in English at Princeton University and his Theology Degree from Union Theological Seminary in New York City.

Rev. Clark was a United Methodist Minister and served 21 years in the South Georgia Conference and 21 years in the North Georgia Conference. He served as pastor at a three charge circuit in Tift County for four years; 12 years in Savannah at Inner City United Methodist Church; three years as a missionary in Peru; five years at Trinity United Methodist Church in Atlanta; 16 years as Campus Chaplain at Oxford College of Emory University and served the first three years of that period as the minister at Allen Memorial United Methodist Church.

He lay in state from noon-2 p.m. Monday, May 9, 2016, at Allen Memorial United Methodist Church, 803 Whatcoat St., Oxford, Georgia, 30054. Services were held at 2 p.m. at the church, with the Revs. Lyn Pace, Campus Chaplain, Don Kea, and Melissa Traver, Dave Shaw, and Josh Roberts officiating. Burial followed in Oxford Historical Cemetery in Oxford.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that any donations be made to the Sammy Clark Scholarship Fund at Oxford College of Emory University.

Beck Funeral Home, in Clayton, was in charge of the arrangements. An online Memorial Register Book is available at

The Clayton Tribune, May 12, 2016

The Clayton Tribune

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 425, 120 North Main Street
Clayton, GA 30525

Phone: 706-782-3312
Fax: 706-782-4230