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Samuel Anthony Donato, 75

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. - Samuel Anthony Donato, 75 of Gaithersburg, MD, and formerly of North Adams died Thursday April 4, 2019, at his home.

He was born in Cambridge, MA, on October 25, 1943, son of Dominic and Josephine (Pavone) Donato. He attended schools in Cambridge.

Sam became a professional jockey at age 15 and raced horses at Suffolk Downs in Boston, Rockingham Park in NH, Narragansett in RI, and all over the east coast. He came to the Berkshires in 1963 when Green Mountain Race Track was built and raced there until his retirement from horse racing in 1974. During that time, he raced for many local families that owned horses. Sam then worked as a painter at North Adams State College for 14 years and was last employed at Mass MoCA until his retirement.

He was a communicant of St. Francis of Assisi Church. He was active in the life of the North Adams community and was a member of LaFesta, the North Adams Lions Club, and the North Adams Sons of Italy. He enjoyed horseback riding, rodeo, and the history of the American West.

His wife was Kathleen May (Camadine) Donato, who died on July 23, 1989. They were married July 10, 1965.

Survivors include one daughter, Kimberly Josephine Donato of Baltimore, MD; one son, Darrin Anthony Donato of Gaithersburg, MD, two brothers, Frank Donato and Salvatore Donato; a grandson, Alexander Donato; and nieces and nephews. Three brothers and two sisters are deceased.

FUNERAL NOTICE: A Liturgy of Christian Burial for Samuel Donato will be celebrated Saturday May 25, 2019, at 10:00 AM at St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church. Burial will follow in Southview cemetery. There are no calling hours. Memorial donations may be made to the Permanently Disabled Jockey’s Fund ( )in care of FLYNN & DAGNOLI-MONTAGNA HOME FOR FUNERALS CENTRAL CHAPELS, 74 Marshall St. North Adams, MA 01247. To add to the Book of Memories, please visit

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Recollections & Sympathy For the Family
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We've lost a wonderful person, Sammy and I go back to our days of exercising and riding the thoroughbreds at Green Mountain park. What fond memories and good times. The 60's. My sympathies to your family and brothers, I often wonder how everyone is doing. Take care. "Love that ride home on the horse of your dreams!" Blessings, RIP Sam! Herbie Lewis, the Prudens, etc. God Bless our memories!
from: Patrick Gray and Family on: 05-14-2019

Such a sad loss. He is missed for his hard working goodness and generosity; & mostly for his great stories.❤️
from: Diane Parsonson: 05-10-2019

To Kim, Darrin, and all Samís family, My family members & I are sharing your loss. Sammy was a dear and giving story teller - and integral member of the Wednesday night dinner club for at least ten years. Like family, we shared Sunday night dinners & holidays.Been missing him since his relocation to Maryland. He was such a hard worker, heís more than earned an eternal peaceful rest. With loving thoughts and fond memories...❤️🌷
from: Diane Parsonson: 05-10-2019

Kim, sorry for the loss of your dad (and your mom) many fond memories from Clover Hill.
from: Judy Licht on: 05-08-2019 Text Ads


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