Sandra Jean Cole

September 1, 1947 - January 20, 2021

Sandra Jean Cole

 August 1, 1947 -January 20, 2021

On August 1, 1947 Sandra Jean Cole entered life in Waverly, New York and entered rest January 20, 2021 in McKinney, Texas.

Sandra worked for Wilcox Lumber, Cohocton, NY, The Toy Factory, Laf-a-lot, Gunlockes and Bryant House in Wayland, NY before becoming a stay home mom.  She enjoyed waitressing many weekends for Bryant House Fish Fries.  She was very proud of the home on Scott Street where she raised her children.  She was very happy to pay off the mortgage despite being divorced and disabled.

In her early thirties she was diagnosed with Progressive Multiple Sclerosis.  As the disease progressed, she found the need to use a cane to assist with walking.  Ultimately, she found it necessary to succumb to a wheelchair and frequently she could be found riding all around Wayland, NY on a scooter. Sandra was a member of the Ladies Legion Auxiliary, president of the local singles group, and could be found working and counting money for the Friday night St. Joseph’s Catholic Church Bingo. 

At age fifty, due to the progression of MS she became a resident at Mercycare Nursing Home in Hornell, NY followed by Monroe Community Hospital.  At both nursing homes she was known as the birthday balloon courier.  She would sing Happy Birthday to the residents to brighten their special day.

In her sixties she relocated to Texas near her children.  She lived in three different nursing homes over the course of thirteen years.  Being near her children and immediate family brought her joy.  Her grandchildren enjoyed riding on the back of “Grandma’s Wheels”.   She lived vicariously through romance novels and magazines.  Always on her computer and cellphone using facetime to stay in touch with family near and far. She became a pretty good competitor with “Words with Friends”.  Before her health deteriorated her family purchased a van which accommodated her special needs allowing her to get out and about.

We are so grateful for all who visited her often and the family members nearby who helped her in so many ways.  Thank you to her dear friend Jan who visited often. Thank you to Gene Brunswick, Karrie Prinzi and Kammie Shutz for the hundreds of cards sent over the years.  We greatly appreciate the nursing home staff in New York and Texas for caring for her over the last twenty-three years.

 

Over the years, Sandra’s faith and hope in the Lord is what kept her going.  She was strong, brave, courageous, and full of love.  During her residence in various nursing homes, she served as an advocate for many roommates over the years.  She was the most amazing sister, mother, grandmother, aunt, and cousin. She will be missed by so many.  Her family finds comfort knowing she is free from illness and resting in eternal glory.

Preceded in death by her parents, one brother; Kevin Cole, One sister; Mary Strope, One brother in law; Fred Oteri and one son in law; Eric Westbrook.

She is survived by one daughter; Laura Westbrook of Leonard, Texas and  one son; Richard Evans of Frisco, Texas, four grandchildren; Amanda and Alayna  Evans, and  Patrick and  Sara Westbrook, four sisters; Carol Warden, (Delbert), Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, Patricia Neu, (Wayne), Princeton, Texas, Maureen Mattice, and Joanne Oteri, both from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, four brothers; David Cole (Abbie), Victor New York, John Cole, Boston Massachusetts, Geoffrey Cole (Rhonda, Anderson South Carolina and Joseph Cole (Gloria), McKinney, Texas, numerous nieces, nephews and a host of other relatives and friends.

 

In Honor of Sandra a Memorial Service will be held Sunday, February 21, 2021 at Bois D’Arc Creek Cowboy Church, 3301 S Hwy 121, Bonham, Texas 75418

Donations given in honor of Sandra Cole can be made to:

National MS Society, PO Box 91891, Washington, DC 20090-1891

https://www.nationalmssociety.org

Memorials Would you like to say a few words? Click Here +

I will miss visiting you during my TX visits with family. The pictures and videos we made while visiting you will always remain such sweet memories. It is comforting to know you can now rest peacefully. No pain, no sickness and no more having to be cared for. You had MS for so many years but yet you always kept a positive attitude. I always admired you as my “Biggest sister”. You were such an inspiration to others for years in the Nursing Homes. I love you Sandra and will miss you forever. Fly high with the Angels. Lovingly, Joanne
Joanne Oteri, February 22, 2021 Today was your beautiful Memorial of your life. Laura and Richard’s eulogies did bring back many fond memories. You built so many memories with so many people. I feel blessed to have had you as my “big sister” and all the memories we built growing up. I remember you and I had to share a bedroom. We had so many siblings we could not have our own rooms. You use to give me a couple of nickels for candy if I picked up my room. One time I didn’t clean my room and you took my St Teresa Statue and set it out on the roof outside our bedroom window! We always had great times together. I remember when I first got my drivers license you and I and Laura and Richard went to Pennsylvania to visit our grandparents. You always had such a positive outlook no matter what life dealt you. You lived most of your life with that horrible MS but always made the best of it. You were truly an angel on earth and are truly an angel in heaven. No more struggles for you waiting to be cared for. God has called you home and now you can rest eternally free if any worries or sickness. I love you Sandra
Joanne Oteri, February 21, 2021 My beautiful Aunt Sandra, I will miss you always, but keep you in my heart forever. I will always cherish the memories. I will miss the chats that we had under the gazebo, and decorating your window for each holiday. I will miss our video chats and phone conversations. I will miss all of the stories you would tell me about your life. I will always remember you and your beautiful smile. I will remember the expressions of your face, when you were in conversations. I will remember your joy, love for life, and faith in God. I love you, and always will. You are a beautiful angel now. You are free. No more MS, no more sickness, and no more pain. You are witb the ones you love in the beautiful kingdom of Heaven. Rest in peace, my beautiful Aunt Sandra. I love you and will see you again one day. Jessica Woodfill , February 20, 2021 I am so sad for my loving aunt to not be here! We had so many great times and I am blessed to have the best memories of her! I was very blessed to be able to spend a lot of time with her growing up and for all of the wonderful visits we had while she lived in Texas. Every time we got to visit, she had the most beautiful glowing smile. Aunt Sandra had a great sense of humor. She loved to joke around like my Grandpa and had the same look in her eyes when she would joke and laugh. The years she was able to spend time with us at my Mom's were so much fun! Dominick and I will miss you, Aunt Sandra! Rest in peace! Until we meet again... Stephanie Duke, February 20, 2021 I went to high school with Sandy and she was such a sweet person. We shared Facebook also. I knew her life was difficult but we prayed together for her. I am sure she is at peace and I know her belief in God was strong. She made others feel better about many things. God bless her and may she Rest In Peace. Cheryl Scott Cheryl Scott, February 19, 2021 Rest In Peace dear sister. You will be so missed. Carol & Del Worden, February 19, 2021 One can only hope to have such a wonderful tribute at the end of their life as this is for Sandra. Sandra truly made the most of every moment of her life as is described in this obituary. MS is just not fair, but in spite of it all, Sandra reached out to and for others. I can just see her as the "Birthday Balloon" person! What joy! A well lived life! Now, rest peacefully Sandra. Sally and Charlie Leeson Sally Leeson, February 19, 2021 I will miss my dear sister Sandra more than words can say. She arrived in Texas on her 60th birthday, 13 years ago. My husband and I spent many many days and hours with Sandra in all 4 nursing homes she lived in here in Texas! When she was still able to eat, we took her a hot meal 2 to 3 times a week. She enjoyed it so much, as she was able to experience different restaurant foods all the time. Our visits generally lasted no less than 2 hours, sometimes longer. I would cut her nails and give her facials, wash her hair, massage her scalp, and just be there. She loved every minute, of course. I always told her she was a queen. She would have a smile as big as a rainbow! She told me often how happy and thankful she was that she had my hubby and me always taking such good care of her. We had a very special bond that gave her strength and joy even during her toughest times. I will miss her and our many long, loving, wonderful visits together for the rest of my days. Patricia Neu, February 18, 2021 Sandra.....the most adventurous and admired big sister. She was so much fun when she was growing up. I can see her beautiful braided hair and her subtle all knowing smile. But I remember some silly things about her too. When she was a toddler Mom was mopping the floor. Sandra came out and when Mom’s back was turned she heard a splash. Sure enough Sandra had walked backwards and ker-plopped into the mop pail. Then one night she thought she would sneak up on Dad who happened to be in the tub. It was an old-fashioned tub with a big rounded lip around it. As she crept up, sneaking her way to surprise him, just as she popped her head up she ran smack into that lip and got quite the gash over her eye. She had a small scar from that incident. As she got older, because we were so close in age, there were many great talks and a few adventures. I always wanted to do the things she was doing but was too young and I so envied her freedom. Mom and Dad had a birthday party for her at one point in the basement of our house. It was so exciting watching the older girls and Sandra dancing and giggling. She even got to ask a boy to the Sadie Hawkins Day dance. I remember how excited she was to be able to go. And her very first car A convertible!! She loved that car and I was more than willing to go for a ride in it. She had a job at the Bryant House as a waitress and most often worked Friday nights for the fish fry patrons. On Halloween Joanne and I dressed up in wild costumes and showed up when she was working. It was hilarious,! Sandra had no idea it was us. She tried to guess who we were but could not. We never spoke a word but gave intimidating grunts to get to get her attention. Then as we grew older and got married and had children we both went to work at the Toy Factory in the evenings. Our special time was the walk home and stopping at the bakery. Oh my God, what a wonderfully smelling place and the sweet tasting pastries....still warm. Yummy. Most of all, Sandra was an inspiration. When she got her diagnosis for MS everything changed. But she never gave up. She tried to participate in as much as she could. Though she may have gotten discouraged at times she always found that special drive she possessed to pick her self up, dust herself off and move on. She spent many hours chatting with friends and family via her computer. I will miss her chats that allowed us to stay close. I will miss her radiant smiling face as we shared our stories and discussion on whatever topic popped up. Rest peacefully Sandra...dance like an angel...kiss the sky......be free of earthly boundaries.......I love you..R.I.P. Lovingly, Carol
Carol Worden, February 18, 2021