Samantha May Van Handel
{ "" }
Share Samantha's life story with friends and family
Send an Email
Or Copy this URL to Share

1959 ˜ 2019

Samantha May Van Handel was born in Billings, Montana, in 1959. She made the big move west with her parents, Sam and Arlene Schanaman, to be with grandparents and other family. Samantha was raised in Vancouver, Washington, and graduated from Fort Vancouver High School in 1977.
She attended the University of Portland for the next 4 years studying Business Administration and Tax Accounting.
Samantha worked for various companies in the local area and enjoyed traveling.
She married in 1991 and moved to California. In the Bay Area she enjoyed accounting work, home restoration, and gardening. She and her husband later moved to North Bend, Washington, where they welcomed their cherished son, Stefan, into their lives.
Samantha was a nature lover, especially knowledgeable about birds and wild animals, and loved to take peaceful walks along the nearby river.
In addition to being a self-employed tax preparer/accountant, Samantha played an active role in North Bend’s art and music scene.
In 2014, she moved back to Vancouver, Washington, to fight brain cancer. She gave it the good fight with the help of her team at Compass Oncology and the angels at Highgate assisted living. She passed into her heavenly home on October 31, 2019.
Samantha leaves behind her son, Stefan of Bellingham; sister, Shelly (Peter) James; nieces, nephews, and many special friends.
Those who knew Samantha will remember her kind and gentle nature which was mixed with a good sense of humor and a mischievous spirit.
Please sign her guest book @

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in The Columbian on Nov. 10, 2019.
Memories & Condolences
Not sure what to say?
3 entries
November 15, 2019
Sam was an amazing woman. I will miss her deeply. Rest in peace my friend until we meet again.
Jerianne Martz
November 14, 2019
Bless you life and accomplishments and especially your brave fight.
Rob Rich
November 10, 2019
Samantha had such a sweet spirit and the photo here captures her lovely smile with a little gleam of mischief in her eyes. Shelley, she was so lucky to have you and your family in her corner helping her navigate through her cancer treatment. Peace to all of you as you cope with her loss.
Anne (Clapperton) Pearson
Invite others to add memories
Share to let others add their own memories and condolences