With a heavy heart, we inform you that Samual Joseph Patalano, former Moreno Valley Unified School District teacher and administrator, passed from this world on Tuesday, December 22, 2020. Sam had been a teacher in MVUSD from 1986 to 2000, at many schools in our district, including Sunnymead Middle School, Vista Heights, North Ridge Elementary, Palm Middle School, Valley View High School, and Landmark Middle School. Sam’s wife, Lynne E. Patalano, taught elementary school in MVUSD from 1989 to 2019.
Sam was born on May 31, 1956 in San Pedro, California. His childhood was spent in and around San Pedro, and he graduated from San Pedro High School in 1974. His undergraduate education included study at CSU Long Beach, CSU Dominguez Hills, and the University of Redlands. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Redlands.
Sam was an extraordinary teacher and administrator, and a life-long learner. He earned Masters’ Degrees at CSU San Bernardino in Environmental Education and School Administration. His lifelong interest in gardening and environmental studies led to the creation of the MESA Science pond project at North Ridge Elementary School, as part of his first Masters’ Degree at CSUSB.
He was one of the first educators in Moreno Valley to teach computer programming to elementary school students in the early 1990’s. His work touched the lives of thousands of students with innovative and out-of-the-box teaching techniques. He was principal of Yucaipa Elementary School. He taught Science at schools in Moreno Valley Unified School District, and Redlands Unified School District. He coached golf teams and developed Advanced Placement curriculum in Environmental Science for Redlands East Valley High.
Sam is survived by his wife, Lynne Patalano, and four children, five grandchildren, two sisters, and a large extended family. A Zoom memorial service is being planned for January 17th at 2:00 pm. Friends and students of the Patalano family are encouraged to connect to the memorial service or post their remembrances of Sam on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/sampatalanomemorial/