Samuel James Calavitta

Samuel James Calavitta

June 04, 1942 - February 19, 2021
Capistrano Beach California

Samuel James Calavitta

June 04, 1942 - February 19, 2021
Capistrano Beach California


Samuel J. Calavitta
06/04/1942 – 02/19/2021

Sam is survived by his wife of 58 years, Diane, 3 sons – Sam Jr., Joseph, and David Calavitta, and 11 grandchildren, his sister Lois and brother-in-law Tom Dadian, Sister-in-law Joan Hoff, along with many nieces and nephews.

Sam began his teaching career in El Segundo, CA where he taught elementary school for 9 years. After moving to Victorville, CA in 1979, Sam continued his teaching career at Victor Elementary School District for the next 30 years. He spent most of his teaching career at Parkview and Village Elementary Schools where he introduced District wide events such as the Junior Olympics and the Math Competition – which was eventually named after him. Students and co-workers knew him as Mr. Cal.“ Mr. Cal, along with his wife Diane, spent several years teaching for Azusa Pacific working with prospective teachers in Reading, Writing, and Classroom Management.

Mr. Cal truly loved teaching and every student was special. His YOU CAN“theme was the message he resonated and hoped to pass on to each and every student.  The poem by Walter D. Wintle was always the first days homework assignment which remained words to live by for many of Mr. Cals students as they graduated and entered junior high and high school. The poem is as follows:

     If you think you are beaten – you are
     If you think you dare not – you dont
     If you like to win, but think you cant
     Its almost a cinch you wont

     If you think youll lose, youre lost
     For out in the world we find
     Success begins with a fellows will
     Its all in a state of mind

     If you think youre out classed – you are
     Youve got to think high to rise
     Youve got to be sure of yourself
     Before you can win a prize

     Lifes battles dont always go
     To the stronger or faster man
     But sooner or later the man who wins
     Is the man who thinks he can.

Ultimately, in the later years of his life, Sam found great solace in the mercy and love of Christ. It was this grace that encouraged him in his daily battle with Parkinsons, and, in his last days, filled him with the hope of eternity.

We confidently trust the soul of Sam Calavitta to the boundless mercy of his Father. Please pray for the repose of Sam Calavitta, the comfort of his family, and the continued inspiration for all those whose life he has affected.

In lieu of flowers, if you wish to send condolences, the family welcomes a donation in Sams name to the St. Jude Childrens Hospital ( Thank you.

The funeral Mass on Friday, March 19 at 10:30am at San Francisco Solano Catholic Church may be viewed on live stream at


Vigil Service

  • Date & Time: March 19, 2021 (10:00 AM)
  • Venue: San Francisco Solano Catholic Church
  • Location: 22082 Antonio Parkway Rancho Santa Margarita, CA 92688 - (Get Directions)
  • Phone Number: (949) 589-7767

Funeral Mass

  • Date & Time: March 19, 2021 (10:30 AM)
  • Venue: San Francisco Solano Catholic Church
  • Location: 22082 Antonio Parkway Rancho Santa Margarita, CA 92688 - (Get Directions)
  • Phone Number: (949) 589-7767

Graveside Service

  • Date & Time: March 23, 2021 (10:15 AM)
  • Venue: Riverside National Cemetery
  • Location: 22495 Van Buren Blvd. Riverside, CA 92518 - (Get Directions)
  • Phone Number: (951) 653-8417

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85 responses to Samuel James Calavitta

  1. Yolette Ros says:

    Hello, I had the pleasure of teaching with Sam, & Lee Dale. Did Lee pass away? I was not aware if he did. Thank you.

  2. Cheryl Dale says:

    Our relationship with the Calavitta’s goes way back to the early 1970s. Sam worked with my in-laws in El Segundo. Sam is also the reason that we moved to the high desert in 1980.
    All I would want to say would take up way too much room here so I will say that God is certainly collecting some amazing angels this year and I hope Lee and Bob and Alice were part of the Welcoming committee to heaven.

  3. I am just finding out that Mr Cal passed away back in Feb 2021! I had Mr Cal in 4th and 5 th grade at El Segundo, Richmond Street Elementary! He taught us so much! It’s funny I read that he made each kid feel special and that’s exactly what I walked away with! I felt like I was his favorite! Ha! 😊 He had multiple nick names for me! I have so many wonderful memories but the one that sticks out most is…. He would have me race the older kids after school! He always told me I was fast, smart and will win and to never give up! He told me to turn it on after the third backstop which I did and won most of my races! Ha! He spent so much extra time , off the clock, with his kids! Mr Cal REST IN PEACE and know that you left everlasting life lessons with all of us! I’m sure they have a never ending supply of nuts up in Heaven!

  4. Jean Harris says:

    You were my 6th grade teacher in the early 89s at Parkview Elementary School. You made lunch dances fun and I love when you taught me how to square dance. I still square dance because of you. You will be truly missed

  5. Scott Casey says:

    I am saddened to hear of Mr. Cals passing. He and his son Sammy (Mr. Cal II) were very inspirational figures in during my childhood in Victorville. I spent many a day at his house with Joseph and David as well as many hours in the gym wrestling. He taught me self-discipline, mental toughness, integrity, and always pushed me to strive to be the best possible no matter the task or field. He was truly one of God’s warriors and teachers. Rest in peace Sir!

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