Former writer, columnist Sam Piatt recalls

PORTSMOUTH — G. Sam Piatt wore many hats during his time in southern Ohio and northeastern Kentucky.

Readers of this publication are likely to know Piatt for his descriptive outdoor columns and his time as a journalist during two different periods in the 2000s.

His last column in the Daily Times was titled, “Is Life Better Now Than Then?” raced just under a month before his death on June 25 at the age of 88.

He opened this column with this: “The great outdoors always played a part in my childhood in this little village on the Ohio River on the Kentucky shore, across from the west end of Portsmouth. The river, which was about 100 yards from our door (and at least once over the threshold to seep onto the floor of the front room) was our main source of recreation.

In his columns, Piatt would often tell a story that was intentionally funny or coincidental, or a lesson learned from his time spent outdoors or in his fishing boat.

In addition to his time with the Daily Times as a writer and columnist, Piatt retired from the Ashland Daily Independent full-time in 1998.

Piatt is the author of two books, a book that featured stories of local WWII veterans titled “Men of Valor” in 2012, and “That Summer of ’45” in 2014 which told the story of he and five friends growing up in Beattyville, a community in Greenup County.

One of those featured in his second post was his lifelong friend John Euton – a man who spent countless hours growing up with Piatt in Beattyville and later in life fishing all over the tri-state area.

“We played outside from day to night,” Euton said. “We played in the streets, and of course the streets were dirt. We played marbles, we played kickball, we swam in the river. We would even swim across the river, believe it or not.

Piatt graduated from South Portsmouth High School in 1953 and was later inducted into the Greenup County School District Hall of Fame.

During his adult life, Piatt was a member of the United States Army. He served 25 years in the U.S. Naval Reserve and another four years in the Kentucky Army National Guard.

Before retiring from the Daily Independent, Piatt graduated from Marshall University with a Regents Bachelor of Arts degree, with a focus on journalism and art, including photography.

Throughout his life, Piatt’s time on any nearby body of fresh water created relatable stories for his columns.

A story by Euton of their time together fishing made Piatt’s fishing abilities as natural as his writing.

“He owned two boats – a nice big bass boat and a john boat. He had never fished in a kayak, I still fish in a kayak. He wanted to go to the Kinniconick, so I showed him how to get in there and pushed him into the water. We went out and he beat me, caught more fish than me.

Piatt’s funeral will be held Saturday, July 2 at 1 p.m. at South Shore First United Methodist Church.

G. Sam Piatt, a former sports journalist and columnist for the Daily Times and the Daily Independent, holds one of the many fish he has caught in his lifetime.

Contact Jacob Smith at (740) 370-0713 ext. 1930, by email to [email protected]or on Twitter @JacobSmithPDT © 2022 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved