Antanas Samkus, the bartender of “Absento fejju”, died: the letter made public by his brother touches the heart

Antanas Samkus, the bartender of “Absento fejju”, died: the letter made public by his brother touches the heart
Antanas Samkus, the bartender of “Absento fejju”, died: the letter made public by his brother touches the heart

The famous bartender Antanas Samkus, who previously worked in the legendary bar “Absent fējos”, has died. The life of a seriously ill man ended in New York, where he had recently been living.

The death of bartender Antanas Samkus was announced on February 1 by his brother Valdas Samkus, president of “Barzdu klubus”. The man shared a sensitive message on his Facebook account and expressed his regret that he did not come to his brother in New York, where he died, sooner and did not have time to say goodbye.

“My hand is shaking. The body, like the trunk of a hollow lonely oak tree, is full of cold echoing wind. I fell asleep at night anxiously delaying my sleep and my dreams. Before sinking into them, seeing his face during our different encounters. I tried to remember if I had seen him bilious, angry, cold or unbrotherly. There were no such dark moments. I only remember bits and pieces: when he was worried; I remember when there was irritation, as is usual in the blood of our family; when burst, but so funny stupid at the board game. On my mom’s anniversary when I missed his clues in the code names game while on his team. Such a trivial anger, but so short.

“Hedgehog, tank, scrap” – anecdote 3.

Antanas Samkus with his brother Valdus / Personal album photo.

We have been waiting for the plane that will take us back in time for the second day. But not fast enough to go back to where our hearts can’t catch up. We still won’t reach the minute where we can say, touch. But he has looked into all of our hearts before.

And it will remain here forever after enriching them.

When we were young, we took turns washing the dishes on the green street.

– Today is your turn!! – while eating kugel or chenak, I mumbled under my breath. It took extra time to clean these dishes.

And it didn’t matter who had to wash the dishes, we both did it with our heads in the cupboard. Later in my life, cleaning the dishes became like a calming practice. The sight of a fork or a cup of tea left in the sink makes your blood boil. I don’t know, like a sister, maybe similar.

And it’s so hard to believe. It is hard to physically feel that a huge part of our life is gone. He left, but there will be a wreck barely a mile away. A familiar tune will play or his daughter will say hello. When we meet people who knew him or at least once communicated with him.

And again, the scumbag chose the wrong decision. I should have rushed to him instead of finishing the Camino. And as I walked that path, I trembled daily at the error of my choices. A hole through the ages, although it is filled daily with new miracles and signs.

All that remains is to write it down. To write out this eminently honorable journey of the spirit, if only words can contain it.

(The text is being written)”, V. Samkus shared his thoughts.

In January, Valdas shared his impressions from St. Jacob’s Way, and at the end of the month he wrote that he would go to his brother in New York on February 1, because he didn’t have much left. He also called for support for his brother’s family.

“The journey of the swashbuckler is coming to an end. My family and I are traveling to visit my brother. We fly 02-01 Vilnius-NYC”, V. Samkus wrote a few days before his brother’s death.

Antanas had stage four cancer. Brother Valdas shared this sad news in the summer of 2023.

“Brother Antanas was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. Its most bitter form is in the liver and pancreas. And many say that “this is not a judgment” and I pray with all my heart that at least this time this whipped up folklore is true.

You can find the support fund for Antanas, Grace (spouse) and daughter HERE:

We have a Lithuanian Account where we collect


Valdas Samkus

Purpose: Support for Antanas

PayPal link.

There’s been an unswallowed lump of sadness and anger stuck in my throat lately. I turn my dewy eyes away more and more often. I hide my face against the walls more and more often. I disappear into the shadows, showing you bits of light from my home.

And don’t get me wrong, this post is not about me. Rather, it’s about the world that crumbles under your feet. I always thought that the real me does not live in my body, but in You, in the people I meet, in digital and photos, in the stories I share and most importantly – in the closest people – family. Today, one of the most important of these parts is the term given by doctors.

I learned to tell stories by weaving my own person into them, because that way they seemed more real. I could testify and represent them, represent and prove them. Life has remained a wonderful gift and I will never deny it of my own free will..

Maybe from the outside, every word reminds me of the narcissist’s EGO games, but only by exposing my wounds in this way do I save what I am and will be.

For some time we have not shared this information outside of our close circle. However, a re-diagnosis after 5 chemotherapy courses did not change the dark scenario and the mystery lost its value. Financial support is specifically needed now.

Anton’s friends live all over the world. I agreed, his friends even in my dreams. Where he went and where he didn’t go, he left traces that play out everywhere we go.

When the pain is close, like this, the rhododendron appears to stop spinning. The whole palette of “most interestingly unpleasant” feelings is visited by various horned forms and sharp claws. Nothing is buried yet and love is what we live for these days,” wrote Valdas Samkus at the time.

Antanas Samkus has been working in the legendary bar-night club “Absento fējos” (which has been operating on Aušras vartų Street) since its opening in 2006. until leaving for the United States, where he lived until his death.

Antanas had a daughter Ula with his beloved Grace in January 2023. The man was diagnosed with an oncological disease three months after her birth.

Barman Antanas was extremely loved by the bar’s customers, he was considered the undisputed star of the area. He had a large group of friends, among whom there were also famous Lithuanian people – from the world of fashion to the biggest businessmen of the country.

Photo gallery:

Antanas Samkus (6 photo)

The article is in Lithuanian

Tags: Antanas Samkus bartender Absento fejju died letter public brother touches heart


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