Growing up in Edinburg, North Dakota, he began his law enforcement training at an early age. After several years of service as a law enforcement officer, he became Sheriff. In this position, he served Pembina County with distinction and dedication during his storied career. He also was a recipient of the NDPOA Peace Officer of the Year Award. Many co-workers and colleagues learned invaluable lessons from him. His legacy will forever be etched in Pembina County and North Dakota law enforcement history. He was the original 4510. When he became Sheriff, he refused to change his unit number to the Pembina County Sheriff's number of 4500 because he said he had been 4510 for so long it would be like calling him by a different name.
Wayne was a dedicated member of the St. Thomas City Council, and had a particular interest in city beautification. He was proud of his Norwegian heritage and spoke the language fluently, reciting the Lord’s Prayer in Norwegian, keeping up to date with world events through a Norwegian newspaper, and corresponding with relatives in Norway. He was a kind and patient horseman, loving and enjoying horses of all kinds, with a special fondness for working with percheron draft horses. He was a creative woodworker. As a talented cook and baker, he always set a beautiful table and presented his food with style. He was an avid lover of the outdoors.
He shared the last 30 years with the love of his life, Jean Ann. Together they enjoyed traveling, working outdoors, gardening and bonfires. After retirement from law enforcement, he and Jean Ann owned and operated Henry’s Countrypolitan in Grafton, where Wayne would be found visiting with customers, packing and unpacking treasures, or keeping the sidewalks clean, not only in front of the store, but for the entire block.
Wayne was the embodiment of God’s Love on this earth, making every person he encountered feel valued and loved. His faith and love for Jesus were demonstrated in his actions, generously giving of himself, and serving others with humility and kindness.
He will be greatly missed by his family: Jean Ann; Dana and Lon Tisdale; his little dog, Isaac; his daughter, Brandi (Bob) Jackson; sons John (Kathy) Samdahl and Ron Samdahl, and all of his grandchildren. Also surviving him are his siblings Vicki (Kenneth) Seim, Cynthia (Frank) Janousek, and Bradley Samdahl, several nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents Oliver and Ada (Granum) Samdahl, brothers Todd Samdahl and Bernie Samdahl, and son Justin Samdahl.
At Wayne’s request, there will be a private celebration of his life. He simply asks that you think of him and say a prayer, share stories and continue his legacy of loving and valuing others.