Sally Ann Hamrick passed away on September 27, 2021, in Durham, NC, after a long battle with Alzheimer’s. She was born on November 6, 1950 in Charleston, West Virginia to Brasil Ward Hamrick and Mary Jane Hamrick (Calain). Sally graduated from South Charleston High School in 1969 and then attended Concord College,now Concord University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in History. Upon graduation, Sally moved to Washington, D.C., where she worked for the Securities and Exchange Commission (SECU) as a paralegal. During her career with the SECU, she was transferred to the San Francisco branch to work building legal cases. In 1975 she left the SECU to discover more adventures. A cross country ride on her beloved red Vespa scooter led her back to Washington, D.C., then to Elkins, West Virginia, to pursue an education in nursing. While in Elkins, Sally cared for her maternal grandmother, whom she was named after, and attended Alderson Broaddus University until she graduated in 1985 with a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing. From 1985 to 1989 Sally served in the Army at Fort Hood, Texas where she met and later married Randolph James Potts. After leaving the Army, Randy and Sally moved to New England. Sally’s experience in the military gave her the knowledge to gain employment as an operating room nurse at New England Medical Center (now Tufts University Medical Center) in Boston, MA. 

In 1992, Sally gave birth to her daughter, Emily Mae Hamrick. Sally and Emily Mae resided in Boston, MA, until 1997, when they moved to Charleston, WV, to be close to Sally’s mother. Sally worked at St. Francis Hospital from 1997 to 2007. After this, Sally pursued travel nursing in Tacoma, Washington. In the spring of 2008, Sally followed a lifelong dream of hiking the Appalachian Trail, where she earned the trail name “Mustang Sal”. Sally was able to complete seventy-five percent of the trail, including making it to Mt. Katahdin before returning to Charleston, WV. In 2009, Sally took her final job as an operating room nurse in Durham, NC at Durham Medical Center. Sally resided in Durham until her passing; with her daughter Emily Mae providing care.

Sally lived life to the fullest and in her free time she was an avid Master Gardener, hiker, and world traveler. Sally enjoyed a glass of red wine or Scotch and a good book. She didn’t wait for opportunities in life but instead made her own . 

Sally was preceded in death by her parents. She is survived by her daughter, Emily Mae Hamrick of Durham, NC; her sister, Mary Lou (Michael) Ray of Lawrenceburg, KY; her brother, Brasil W. (Julia) Hamrick, Jr. of Verona, VA; her uncle, Jack Calain of Elkins, WV. Sally was also survived by four nieces and nephews; Nancye Jane (Greg) Taylor, Steven Ray (Jessica) Seeberger, Leah Hamrick, and Nathan Hamrick; and several great nieces and nephews. As a nurse, Sally wished to teach the next generation of medical professionals and per her wishes was donated to the Duke Anatomical Gifts Program. A private memorial will be scheduled at a later date. The family would like to thank the Durham VA for the care they provided Sally over the last ten years as well as numerous caregivers. In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting donations to the Appalachian Trail Conservancy ( or the Alzheimer's Association ( in Sally’s honor. You’re at peace now mom, walking amongst the trees and living in the wind. 
Posted by Oredolapo Oyindamola Kart... on October 8, 2021
Rest on beloved

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Posted by Oredolapo Oyindamola Kart... on October 8, 2021
Rest on beloved
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Such a dynamo!

Shared by Pam Hill on November 3, 2021
My husband Doug and I were fortunate to become friends and neighbors with Sally back in Elkins, WV.  Her personality was always upbeat and adventurous.  She also openly shared her generous spirit and pragmatic philosophies!  We became good friends that shared interests in cooking, home gardening, traveling, and life adventures!  She and her husband had an affinity for cats (me, not so much at the time!).  One time during the fall we dropped by her house when she revealed that she had baked 6 homemade pumpkin pies.  Impressed with that productivity, we asked to check them out. When we walked into the kitchen near the back of the house, we caught one of her cats on the countertop, casually munching into the center of a pie, after leaving bite marks in 3 or 4 of the other pies!!! Probably one of the few times we heard Sally cuss like a sailor!
 We were sorry to see her move on from Elkins, but knew she could land on her feet anywhere; such an independent soul!  
Sal, may your spirit soar all over the world! We wish you peace.
Love from Pam and Doug