Sandra Dwan, 81


Sandra Karyl “Sandy” Dwan passed away peacefully surrounded by her family on Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020 in San Luis Obispo, California after a battle with Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The daughter of the late Leonard Frederick and Pauline Elizabeth Van Houten, and sister of her beloved late brother Dennis Van Houten, Sandy was born on July 23, 1939 in Omaha, Nebraska. She lived in many states prior to graduating with her bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois and a master’s degree in library science from Northern Kentucky University. While she brought her love of education to the classroom as a grade school teacher, her real passion for books ignited when she took on the role of elementary school librarian. Her extensive knowledge of literature was shared in all of the schools and libraries where she served. Students in Indiana, Missouri, New Mexico, Kentucky, North Carolina and Arizona were the recipients of the kindness and care she poured into her work. Sandy served as the librarian at Copper Rim Elementary School in Globe, Ariz. where she eventually retired in 2002. In addition to Globe, where she lived with her late husband Edward “Boo” Dwan for many years, Sandy formed long-lasting friendships throughout her life. Referred to as a “gem of a friend,” Sandy also maintained friendships from high school and college, friends whom she dearly loved and who will always remember her beautiful smile and heartfelt laughter. Sandy was truly the sterling example of a life well-lived. Her positive outlook lifted spirits, and her intelligence and humor graced many conversations. While family, friends and education were priorities in her life, she also loved nature, animals, Broadway musicals, history and different cultures. She was fortunate to travel the world to wonderful locales including Rome, Rio de Janeiro and Cairo and spent the last nine years of her life living on California’s shining Central Coast. She leaves behind her daughters, Elizabeth Nikels of Claremont, CA and Judy Reesha of Glendale, CA and her very special love, her granddaughter, Olivia Reesha. Sandy is also survived by her companion Bradley Omick and his family Jody Storsteen, Tanner Storsteen and Tate Storsteen; cousins Pam Hamilton and Kristi Ragland; sister-in-law Jacque Van Houten, niece Caitlin Rocha, and nephew Eric Van Houten. Donations in Sandy’s name can be sent to Woods Humane Society, 875 Oklahoma Avenue, San Luis Obispo, CA. 93405, where she adopted the “dog love of her life” Rosie, or to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

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