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Award-Winning Soccer Player, Barnegat Alum, Dies At 22

Courtesy of Thos. L. Shinn Funeral Home
Courtesy of Thos. L. Shinn Funeral Home
Courtesy of the Thos. L. Shinn Funeral Home in Manahawkin

Samantha Marie Franco, 22, died on May 21, 2014.

She was an inspiration to everyone who ever met her. She was one of the most caring and warm-hearted people, and she was the first to offer help to someone in need.

In her short time with us, Samantha managed to achieve more than most people do in an entire lifetime. She was extremely intelligent and a member of the National Honor Society at Barnegat High School before attending classes at Ocean County College.

She was also a fierce athletic competitor and played for multiple soccer teams including the OCC Vikings, which ranked #3 in the nation in 2012 thanks in part to Samantha's indomitable spirit and skills.

Samantha was confident and independent. She was self-employed for a health and wellness company and was concerned only with helping and inspiring others.

She was a loving sister, daughter and aunt and we are all better off for having her in our lives. She had an amazing enthusiasm for life and no matter what obstacles arose. She was continuously positive throughout her struggle; and everyone who knew her gained through her physical and spiritual strength.

She is survived by her parents, C.J. and Debbie, her sisters Diana and Sandra, and her niece Josephine.

The viewings will be held on Friday, May 23 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.at the Thos L. Shinn Funeral Home, 10 Hilliard Drive in Manahawkin.The funeral and mass will be held on Saturday, May 24, 2014 at 10 a.m. at St. Mary's Parish, West Bay Avenue in Barnegat.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to David's Dream & Believe Cancer Foundation, 609- 548-3382, david@davidsdreamandbelieve.org.


Brandy the Dog May 23, 2014 at 12:15 PM
So young. Such a shame. Heartfelt condolences to the family.
Elaine May 23, 2014 at 06:48 PM
Thank you for posting this beautiful tribute to Sam Franco in its entirety. Samantha was a beautiful, talented young lady who brightened the world for everyone who knew her. She will be remembered by so many and have a special place in all of our hearts. We will keep her family in our prayers.
mj May 24, 2014 at 12:16 AM
I would like to send my most sincere condolences to the entire Franco family. Cancer should not exist in a world full of science and technology, nor should it be devouring our children and other family members. I have lost nearly my entire family to cancer and I still sit scratching my head in disbelief on how this could be happening to such young people full of life and potential. It just isnt fair at all! My heart goes out to all of you and to everyone who had the priveledge to know this young woman. I will keep all of you in my thoughts and prayers. RIP <3

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