Sandra Kay Johnson
February 28, 1958 – June 14, 2020
Sandra Kay Johnson passed away unexpectedly on June 14, 2020. She is survived by Joan and Jim Rooney, her brother Clyde Johnson, her children Elisha, Asia, and Andrea, her grandchildren Ben and Noelle, as well as the many friends that she considered family.
On a Friday, February 28, 1958, two days after her father’s birthday, Sandy was born in Portland, OR. She was the second child to Joan Carol Parsons and Thomas Jerrell Johnson. The day of her birth, her father Tom re-enlisted in the Navy. The family left for San Francisco for Tom to train at Treasure Island Naval Station. Sandy and her siblings grew up “Navy Brats” moving to the east coast, back to the west coast, and eventually settled in San Diego, which they considered their childhood home. Sandy and her older sister Nancy were less than a year apart and very close. Just before Nancy’s 16th birthday, she died of a brain tumor. Shortly after, Tom retired from the Navy and moved the family back to Vancouver, WA.
Sandy graduated from Columbia River High School in 1976. In the late spring after her 19th birthday she married her first husband, Jerry Strawn. She became a dental assistant for Dr. Jim Classen until the birth of her first daughter, Elisha. A couple of years later, Sandy & Jerry separated and divorced. She met her second husband, Robert Burgess and soon gave birth to a son, Asia. They married in 1984. Her youngest daughter, Andrea was born a couple of years later. Sandy & Robert separated and divorced and remained friends over the years.
In 2006 Sandy suffered a stroke that left her weak on the right side of her body. She continued to have trouble walking and used one of her many magnificently carved canes for the rest of her life. Sandy was a gifted artist in many mediums. She loved to doodle and paint, in both watercolor & acrylics. She often painted landscapes and always shared her art with the people she loved. She enjoyed carving and especially loved working with semi-precious stones, inlaying them into any surface she could get them to stick to. She took art classes in design and photography at Clark College. She wood burned designs that she & Robert would sell at the Portland Saturday Market. She taught herself any creative artform that intrigued her. Her step dad Jimmy always took an interest in keeping her supplied with brushes, paints, and tools to pursue her art.
Children were drawn to Sandy’s childlike nature and intense imagination. She always seemed to take in all the “strays”. They knew that no matter what was going on at home, they were safe and taken care of at Sandy’s house. She would treat them like one of her own. She once staged a protest of neighborhood kids marching, chanting and demanding candy bars at the back door of the corner bar encouraging the kids not to give up until finally the exasperated bar tender appeared with candy for all.
Sandy was generous to a fault and would give you the shirt off her back if you asked for it, a place to sleep if you needed one, and a meal if you were hungry. She had an infectious laugh that turned into a loud cackle when she was really having fun. She had a dazzling smile that lit up her whole face. She couldn’t be bothered with the constraints of time and always marched to the beat of her own drum.
She loved deeply and made everyone she knew feel like family. She was a bright light to all of us and her absence is keenly felt.
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Sandra Kay Johnson
June 19, 2020
I met Sandy B"as I've always called her that! Through my family, Sandy has been a huge part of our family for many years, She met my sister Shelly and they were roommates for sometime, Sandy used to make almost all of my sister's clothes, tie, dye, skirts you name it Sandy was there to make it and with pride, They were beautiful, Then Sandy met the rest of my clan there was 7 of us, Mike, Steve, Craig, Brenda, Shelly, Dawnell and my self And we all loved her so much She knew my mom an dad also and always kept them in concerne, Then Brenda and "B" became best friends, they even made up there own wedding at the naigboring bar outside in the Field! All in fun of course... But oh wow they dressed up Sandy made Daisy halos for their heads and the hippie wedding was on! Lol, Brenda and her remaind friends for life, Then we lost Brenda, but Sandy was always there to keep her memory alive, Then Sandy was there in a huge way with my Brother Mike and his girlfriend Debbie, Sandy again came with her huge heart and love to be the one to deliver my little nephew Kraig into this big world. There is so much love and respect for her and I just wanted to share just a little of alot of what we had with her. I'm sending my deepest condolences and concerns to her kid's and the rest of her family and friends, She is going to be missed so much by all of Us, my heart hurts, but I know she is in the loveing arms of Our creator, I'm so thankful for Sandy B" I love you, My family loves you, Rest in Paradise, My deepest condolences. Darcy and the Erie family. 🌹🙏👼
June 18, 2020
I met sandy when I was a baby and she stayed in my life all the way up. My children knew and loved her and she always made sure I was okay. Sandy will always hold a very special place in my heart and my condolences and prayers go out to her family she was the most amazing woman I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting she will be so missed. ❤️
June 17, 2020
I'm so sorry for everyone's loss. I met sandy many many years ago. She was a wonderful soul.. I'll always remember her riding her bike all over town. I feel bad I've not stayed in touch with her. God was blessed when he chose his newest angel to receive her angels wings... Fly high sandy❤️🌹😇🌈
June 17, 2020
Sandy captured the hearts of so many. She was a friend that will never be forgotten and will be missed terribly by all who knew her. May her family and friends find comfort in each other while we grieve and remember the joy she brought to all of our lives. ❤️❤️❤️
June 17, 2020
Please feel free to share memories of my mom and pictures if you wish. Our family would love to see them!