Samuel C. Deford, 27

Died on Oct. 2, 2015
The son of financial investment managers, Sam Deford grew up in Maryland, attended private schools, and earned physics and math degrees from the University of Colorado-Boulder.

Shoulder surgery in college led to pain pills, then heroin.

He came to Florida for treatment at Caron Renaissance, did well and wound up working at a Delray Beach marketing agency called Fractl. A "creative strategist," his job called for "a unique blend of creativity, technical expertise and data journalism." He also tutored physics.

His sense of humor led him to create an Instagram account called Potatoesinplaces, with images of potatoes on such varied locations as a scooter and printing machine.

Days before he died, he visited his girlfriend in San Francisco. On the trip he called his mother and raved about a book he had just read called The Martian. “He couldn’t wait to see the movie come out because he wanted to be the guy who said the movie is not as good as the book,’’ his mother, Trish Deford, said.

On the morning of Oct. 2, the day the movie was released, he was found dead in his bedroom. An autopsy showed fentanyl in his system.

He was 27.

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