Thursday, February 23, 2023
Family isn't defined only by last name or by blood. It is defined by commitment, acceptance, and by love. Sandy was not my biological mother, but rather my selfless bonus mother. She was also my friend. I think most of us, even if we haven't experienced being a step parent, would agree that it is a thankless job. Sandy managed that role with ease. She knew when to be the stagehand, the leading lady, and when to sit in the audience. She accepted our family dynamics and put our needs first. Like any journey in life, we encountered adversities and challenges, but Sandy remained committed and dedicated to her family. While I loved her kind heart, patience, her warmth, and her over the top Halloween and Christmas decorations, I will tell you that my absolute favorite quality about Sandy was the fact that she didn't judge. No matter how many bad choices I made, and there were a few, Sandy always gave me grace. The first time I met Sandy, I remember her laughing at everything that I said. I liked that about her. She was always happy. She was a true "go with the flow" type of person and never complained or criticized. Sandy loved softball and golfing. She also enjoyed volleyball, even coaching for a time. Not surprisingly, Sandy was elected Homecoming Queen in High School. The qualities that surely earned her that title were inherent in her makeup. High integrity, inclusive, kind, accepting and friendly to everyone. Sandy was an independent, bright woman with interests and hobbies, a lot of friends, great style, and full of fun stories about her experiences in life. I have 35 years of wonderful memories with Sandy. So many great stories that I am able to share with my daughter Dia. Dia also loved Sandy, who she referred to as “nee-nee”. While we didn't share genes, we shared a beautiful and meaningful relationship. Sandy gave us her unconditional love, support, and time for no other reason than she wanted to. No matter what came her way, including a cancer diagnosis, Sandy remained positive and hopeful. While I'm deeply saddened that she is no longer with us in flesh, I find peace in knowing that her suffering is over and she is in a better place. Forever in our hearts and memory. Sandy will be greatly missed and always loved.
Angela Donisi, Daughter and recipient of her love