Burlington County mourns passing of former county veterans services officer

Special to The Sun

The Burlington County Commissioners are mourning the passing of Samuel Podietz, a former Lumberton mayor who assisted countless veterans during his 13 years as Burlington County’s Veterans Services Officer.

“Sam Podietz will forever be remembered as a true champion for Burlington County’s residents, but especially its veterans, military service members and their families,” said Burlington County Commissioner Director Felicia Hopson. “He treated every veteran he encountered like they were part of his own family. No issue was too big or too small for him to tackle. His passing is a huge loss that will be mourned across the county and state, but he leaves behind a massive legacy of service.”

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A former Marine Corps. veteran who served in Vietnam, Podietz worked as the county’s Veterans Services Officer from 1993 until 2006. In that role, he was able to assist numerous Burlington County veterans with all manner of issues ranging from VA health care and benefits to lost medals, education and support programs and disability compensation. He also became an outspoken advocate on a number of issues related to veterans and defense employees, military service members and their families and was an active member of the Burlington County Military Affairs Committee.

In addition to his time as Burlington County’s Veterans Services Officer, Podietz served as director of military and veterans affairs for State Senator Diane Allen and as a member of the Burlington County Military Affairs Committee. He was also a past mayor and councilman in Lumberton and served on the New Jersey State Board of Education and the school boards for Rancocas Balley Regional, Lumberton Township and the Burlington County Institute of Technology.

A funeral service will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 31, at the Platt Memorial Chapels, 2001 Haddonfield-Berlin Road, Cherry Hill. Visitation will begin at 12:15 p.m. A service will follow at 12:45 p.m.

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