Marie L. Sanford, 87, formerly of Valparaiso, passed away Monday, June 13, 2022 in Goshen, IN. She was born February 5, 1935 in St. Paul, MN to Emil & Charlotte (Carrell) Dey. On August 17, 1958 she married Verne R. Sanford who preceded her in death on January 23, 2022. Survivors include their children, Colleen (Don) Prough of Goshen, IN, Keith (Ellen) Sanford of Arizona, Paul (Carole) Sanford of North Carolina, Linda (Jerry) Mader of Michigan, and Amy (Robert) Pendowski of Wisconsin, sister-in-law Sally Dey of Minnesota, Verne’s sisters Delores Brandt of Illinois and Carol Walker of Montana, and numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, and nephews, all of whom were precious to and cared for by Marie. She was preceded in death by her parents, her stepmother Erna (Butzke) Dey, and brother Jerome “Jerry” Dey.
Marie had a God-given, ferociously independent, yet modest spirit and strong work ethic. Making the best of life’s circumstances and finding creative ways to solve problems are things at which she excelled. She trained as a Registered Nurse at St. Lucas Deaconess Hospital School of Nursing in Faribault, MN. Caring for babies and young children was Marie’s passion at Porter Memorial Hospital, a local pediatrician’s office, the Valparaiso WIC office and Hilltop Neighborhood House. Marie also utilized her nurse training as she modeled and offered healthy living advice to those around her, cared for family, friends, and neighbors, and went above and beyond in the care of Verne with his very limited eyesight. Several community not-for-profit agencies also benefitted from her volunteer efforts. The Sanford family enjoyed Marie’s great cooking and her talent as a seamstress as she made clothes, curtains, costumes and almost anything else with cloth. Marie had a green thumb for nurturing plants of all types, which was a skill she learned from her florist father in MN; she continued growing seedlings throughout her life. Marie was a longtime and active member of Immanuel Lutheran Church, with a strong faith in God and a close-knit group of friends established there.
A visitation will be held Saturday, July 23, 2022 from 2-3 pm at Immanuel Lutheran Church, 1700 Monticello Park Dr., Valparaiso with memorial service beginning at 3:00 pm. CST. Everyone is invited to a time of fellowship afterward. Memorial donations may be made to Hilltop Neighborhood House, 460 S. College Ave, Valparaiso, IN 46383.
Our hearts are with you in this time of sorrow. Praying for God’s comfort and peace for your family. With our deepest condolences, -Jim & Becky Hibbard
To my beautiful Family, as I remember the wonderful Sister-in- Law Marie was to me…loving and very thoughtful and kind…I love you all and my thoughts are there with you today. God’s blessings on you all…With my love, -Carol Walker
Marie Dey Sanford is a cousin who I got to know when I went to Valpo in 1958-1963. On return visits to Valpo I connected with Marie and Verne. My husband and I stayed with them on one of our trips through the midwest. Marie and Verne were inspirational role models, dedicated parents, giving to many others through volunteer work with low-vision groups, lonely homebound elderly and nursery babies needing comfort. Marie (and Verne) embodied Christ's love and compassion towards a wide range of people. I was a recipient of Marie's support and encouragement through the years. I will miss her. -Elisabeth Dey Wheeler
Our hearts are with you in this time of sorrow. Praying for God’s comfort and peace for all of you and your family. Many fond memories with your family on Wood Street - king of the hill - baseball/soccer ……. With our deepest condolences, -Stan Warner