The roofing industry is mourning the loss of Samuel T. Piper, who served as president of J.A. Piper Roofing Co. in Greenville, S.C. and served as a vice president of the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA).

Born in Greenville in 1923, Piper was a 1944 Citadel graduate and veteran who served as a member of the U.S. Army during World War II. He served as president of J.A. Piper Roofing until retiring in 1994. Piper died on Jan. 8, 2020 at the age of 96.

Piper was heavily involved in the roofing industry. He served as the NRCA’s vice president for three years as well as an NRCA director from 1976-77, 1979-82 and 1983-86. He chaired the NRCA’s Manual Update Committee from 1981-82 and the Awards Committee from 1983-84. Piper also served on the NRCA’s Political Action Committee, Contractors Certification Task Force, Special Presidential Commission, Industrial Liaison Committee and Insurance Committee, among other committees.

His father, the late Joseph Avery, served as an NRCA president. According to the NRCA, the J.A. Piper Award was established in 1947 and is named after Piper’s father in appreciation for his efforts to keep the NRCA alive during the Great Depression. Piper won the award in 1983, honoring him for demonstrating outstanding service to the NRCA and the roofing industry.

Along with the NRCA, Piper was involved with the Carolinas Roofing and Sheet Metal Contractors Association (CRSMCA) for more than 50 years, serving as a director and as president. In 1967, he received the Gordon M. Waters Distinguished Service Award, which annually honors members who have made significant contributions to the association, roofing industry and community.

Piper was also instrumental in the development of the CRSMCA’s Self-Insurers Fund, a worker’s compensation group, and served as president.

He is survived by two sons, Samuel O. Piper and wife, Betty, of Marietta, Ga., and Donald C. Piper and girlfriend, Cathy O'Shea, of Seneca, S.C.; three stepsons, Harvey Pride and wife, Bibi, of Decatur Ala., Garner Pride and wife, Lanae, of Hartselle, Ala., and Charles Pride and wife, Cathy, of Englewood, Colo.; five grandchildren, Mark Piper, Noah, Matt, Robbie and Walker Pride; as well as many other loving family and friends. His nephew, Roddy, serves as the current president of J.A. Piper Roofing.

In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that memorials may be made to Buncombe Street United Methodist Church, 200 Buncombe St, Greenville, S.C. 29601; The Salvation Army, 417 Rutherford St, Greenville, S.C. 29609; or to the Citadel Foundation, 171 Moultrie St, Charleston, S.C. 29409.