Cover photo for Sandra Stearns's Obituary
Sandra Stearns Profile Photo
1955 Sandra 2017

Sandra Stearns

February 15, 1955 — March 3, 2017

** Video Tribute Can Be Viewed Below ** Sandra K. Stearns, age 62 of Belle Fourche, died Friday, March 3, 2017 at the Belle Fourche Healthcare Center. A celebration of her life will take place 11am Saturday, March 11th, 2017 at the Nisland Independent Community Church in Nisland. Visitation will be held 5 to 7 pm Friday at Leverington Funeral Home of the Northern Hills in Belle Fourche. Sandra Kay Barnett, was born in Colfax WA, February 15, 1955 to Jack and Marlys (Peterson) Barnett. When Sandy was three the family returned to South Dakota where she attended Ingersoll, Fairview, Newell and Nisland Schools until she graduating from the 8th grade. Then they moved to Whitewood Valley where they started a dairy farm. She graduated from Sturgis high school in 1973 and worked on the dairy farm until she met Sherrill Stearns in October 1972 and they married on October 12th 1973. Following her dreams of being a wife, homemaker, gardener and great cook she made her home with Sherrill in Lead South Dakota. Early during this nesting, Sandy developed a passion for cardinals, which Sherrill contributed to with every gift giving occasion, resulting in a red feathered collection of over 5,000 pieces. While Sherrill spent 30 years at Homestake Gold Mine, he came home daily to Sandy sewing clothes, costumes for Halloween, making all the trimmings for a Thanksgiving feast or a Christmas celebration. Topping it all off with photographic evidence, a scrap book or photo album to document the event. July 16, 1996 while fishing the Missouri River on “The Blue Boat” of Captain Bud Wieser she caught a record Lake Hearing which weighed 2lb 11-1/2oz and was 18-¼” long to capture not only the women, but the men’s state record for that type of fish. Unfortunately, the record was broke later that year to which Sandy replied, “Darn”. She would tell Sherrill, “Make sure you carry a pen at all times, so I can sign autographs “. Being a member of the Women of the Moose she was awarded Co-Worker of the Year for North and South Dakota region 1988-89 which that was a proud moment for her and Sherrill. In 2002, at the advice of her father-in-law, Daryl Stearns, Sam and Shed purchased land on Valley 1 Road, Belle Fourche, SD not far from her childhood home. It is on this beautiful acreage that Sandy and Sherill spent the next year clearing the property and building their present day beautiful home, which Sandy designed and she and Sherrill physically helped Bing Harkin build, while living in their 5-th wheel trailer on the property. Having various jobs over the years and volunteering for many things her favorite job was taking care of her husband of 43 years and her toy poodles, Coco and Missy during the week. But then came the weekend, where you could find Sandy and Sherrill and many singing friends at any local karaoke event. In late 2012 after doctoring for unknown health issue that had haunted her for months, Sandy was diagnosed with lymphoma. After 4-½ years of searching for a cure, she lost her battle March 3, 2017. Sandra is survived by her husband Sherrill of Belle Fourche, pups Coco and Missy; sister Laurie (John) Clark of Dukedom, TN, brother Tim (Christine) Barnett of Corpus Cristi, TX ; mother-in-law Helen Stearns of Belle Fourche; sister-in-law, Sue Forward of Dinosaur CO; brother-in-law Alan (Tammy) Stearns, Belle Fourche, SD, brother-in-law Roger (LaDola) Rhoads, Brighton, CO; cousin, Rita Kay Peterson and good friend Dallas Risling of Yankton, SD; special friends Pam Millard Lead, SD, and Genevieve Minor Nisland, SD; and numerous loving cousins, nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, Jack and Marlys Barnett; brother Jackie Barnett; nephews Josh Barnett and Derek Wilkerson; niece Loreli Barnett; father-in-law Daryl Stearns; mother-in-law Alvina Stearns; sister-in-law Marvella Maxwell; brother-in-law Harry Forward and her grandparents. Celebration of Life 11:00 A.M. – Saturday – March 11th, 2017 Nisland Independent Community Church Nisland, South Dakota   Officiant Pastor Doug Clark   Honorary Urnbearers Chuck Bossert     Bing Harkin   Bill Harrison Leon Minor      Penny Oedekoven     Charlie Rickert   Urnbearers Buddy Brown                                      Pam Millard Mark Arett                                  Genevieve Minor   Special Music “God’s Will”, (Recording) “Go Rest High on that Mountain” Mel Paklin, soloist Cong. Hymns – “The Old Rugged Cross”, “It is Well” Faith Shuck, pianist Alice Marrs, organist
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