She lit up the room wherever she entered. Her smile could launch a thousand ships. Her long sandy hair would sway in the breeze and you always knew that Sandy had been there.

Sandy died at age 15 of viral meningitis and encephalitis and was laid to rest on Valentine's Day 1973. It was a death my family will never get over. So young, so much happiness in her, so much to live for. But God said it was time for her to come home and she obliged him willingly. She lives on in all of us as our guardian angel. One day I will see her again and she will smile as always.

I Love Him

(written by Sandy shortly before her death)

As I kneel beside my bed tonight,
At the close of a weary day,
I bury my head in my trembling hands
And tears fall as I pray.

Dear God, unworthy though I am,
I ask one thing of you
Bless the one I love tonight,
Make all his dreams come true.

Dear God, he's human, you know,
But when the day is done,
He may be lonely as I am now
Or in some other's arms.

I can no longer go to him
And take him by the hand,
But dear God, you can go to him
And make him understand.

Just help him keep me in his heart
Until we meet again,
But even though we're far apart,
I love him, God! Amen!

Dear Sandy,

Today would have turned you thirty-six,
As I wonder where you'd be,
And how many kids you'd have by now,
And if you'd be married to Steve.

Maybe you would have turned up,
On the cover of a magazine,
Or won an Oscar for Best Actress,
Every leading lady's dream.

Would you have joined the Peace Corps,
And proudly led the cause?
Wasn't there so much for you to do,
For your contract to have a clause?

You were always there for me,
And you'd light my darkest night,
You showed me many gifts,
And taught me to win the fight,

I was just twelve when you went away,
But I learned so much from you,
And over the years I've realized,
You're still teaching me what to do.

With twenty years passed,
I struggle an answer to why,
And who made the decision that fifteen,
Was when you had to die?

But when I find you in my thoughts,
And wishing so hard you were here,
It seems this peacefulness surrounds me,
As your touch wipes away my tears.

I hope someday I'll understand,
Why you couldn't stay,
But until then I'll carry on,
Because you're never far away.

Love,

Ruthi, your baby sister

April 16, 1993

Although you are not with us, you are in all of our hearts.

We will love you and miss you always

Dad, Mom,
Kriss, Patti, Cyndee, Ruthi and Pete

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