Sandra Toney Zauner

09/29/1955 –


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Sandra Toney Zauner was born Sandra Leffel Toney to James William Warren and Virginia Simms Toney in High Point, North Carolina on September 29, 1955. Shortly after the birth of Sandy and her twin sister Nancy, the family moved to Ridgewood, NJ where she graduated from Ridgewood High School. After working in banking for a period, she went to The University of Tulsa School of Nursing, earned her Bachelor’s Degree in nursing, and graduated in 1980.

Following graduation, she was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the US Army Nurse Corp and went to Fort Sam Houston, San Antonio, TX to attend the Nurse Officer Branch Basic Course. It was there she met her future husband, Michael Zauner (Mike), who was attending a different course. Upon completing the course, she was assigned to Fort Gordon, Georgia. Mike, meanwhile, returned to his duty station in San Francisco, CA. Mike and Sandy dated cross country for two years. When Mike received orders for Germany, they knew that was too great of a distance to date. Prior to his orders, Mike had asked Sandy if she would marry him. They were married on December 18, 1982. In January of 1983, Mike departed for Germany, and Sandy followed several months later, after receiving her orders. They lived in Germany until 1986 and had a long honeymoon driving all over Europe during their time off. Their first son, Michael Zauner III was born in Germany on September 12, 1985. Sandy elected to stay at home with their son, and was discharged from the Army as a Captain.

During her five years of military service, it was her great honor and privilege to care for the US Marines after the 1983 terrorist Beirut barracks bombings. She worked tirelessly in the ICU, without sleep or rest, to save as many as she could.

Mike got accepted to a Masters in Healthcare Administration course sponsored by the Army so they returned to Fort Sam Houston. After a year, they went to Fort Leonard Wood, MO and they had their second son, James William Zauner (Bill) on July 16, 1988. They were later reassigned to Fort Sam Houston where Sandy earned her Masters Degree in Nursing at The University of Texas, San Antonio, TX. Mike retired from the Army in 1994 and the family moved to Lubbock, TX and has been here ever since. Sandy was one course away from receiving her Nurse Practitioner license at Texas Tech University when she became ill. While taking classes for her Nurse Practitioner license, she continued her career as a nurse, as well as being the best mother and wife she could be. Their son Mike currently resides with his wife Ranae in Orem, UT, and Bill resides in Flower Mound, TX.

Sandy was the most loving and caring person. She was a giving servant always helping anyone who needed anything. Her kind and caring spirit lit up the room wherever she went. As a Registered Nurse, her patients received compassionate care from her. She never hesitated to welcome anyone into the home and happily served food, especially during the holidays, for those who were alone. Her greatest joy came from making others happy and serving them.

She had a long 15 year battle with cancer and a host of other medical conditions, and was in constant and increasing pain during those last years. Nonetheless, she remained cheerful and ever faithful to her Lord and Savior, Jesus. People with whom she came in contact said she was such an inspiration to them by her strength, courage, love and spirit. She will be remembered by all for her gentle and joyous spirit. She will be remembered by her sons as an incredible mother, and live on through her sons by the inspiration she has been in their lives. She will be remembered by her husband who loved her with all his heart. Mike and Sandy were so in love during their 35 years of marriage and were joyous in each other’s presence. She received the most joy when the family played praise and worship music together. They played at many churches, revivals and for evangelists from all over the world. It was precious for her to be together as a family and praise and worship the Lord.

She left a huge impact on this world and it is with tremendous sadness that she has left us. God used her tremendous faith and love during her suffering to show His love for others.  We rejoice, however, that for the first time in 15 years she is not having pain and suffering. We also rejoice that she is now resting in Jesus whom she loves so much.

“Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage one another with these words.” (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 NIV)


8 thoughts on “Sandra Toney Zauner”

  1. Mike, Mike Junior, and Bill,

    It is with great sadness that I write you following the loss of your wife and mother as she was my baby sister long before that. When our mother was so ill in High Point and was unable to take care of her twins, at age seven, I learned how to change diapers, bathe, make formula, and feed Sandy and her sister, Nancy. I could easily tell them apart as they, to me, were so different.

    Sandy was special, gifted in so many ways, and her path toward nursing came from a genuine desire to help others. She touched the lives of many in her few short years here on Earth.

    Her pain and suffering has ceased. She is united with her Heavenly Father, her older brother and sister, her parents and grandparents. She will be missed.


  2. Tracy Autry, R.N.

    I will miss her, terribly. You’re all in my thoughts. Thank you for letting me be a part of her journey….

  3. Mike and Family, my heart goes out to you at the loss of your wife, mother, sister, loved one and friend. The Bible says in Revelation 14 that she now rests from her labors but that her works do follow her. Her works of love, kind words, loyalty, service, strength and courage, and devotion to those she loved and served while living do follow her here and will be rewarded greatly on that day when Christ returns to gather His children home. The Bible says that will happen: at His coming. In I Corinthians 15, Paul by inspiration writes: 20 But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. 21 For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. 22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. 23 But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming. 24 Then cometh the end….And surely that coming and that day hastens on greatly so that we echo the Apostle John in saying: Even so, come LORD Jesus, come! May the LORD Himself comfort, bless, and guide you all toward that great day of rejoicing and reunion with Sandy and with all those who love and worship the LORD! Until then, may you all keep up the faith as you prepare to meet the LORD in peace and be reunited with your precious loved one who now rests in Jesus. My heart and prayers are with you all. God bless you at this time. Ken

  4. God bless you, Zauner men, as you make your way without your precious wife and mother. We had lots of fun times at Murfee and in Cub Scouts. Sandy was an inspiration to all on how to be a loving, caring, giving person. I’m so glad I had the honor and pleasure of knowing her and your whole family. God bless you with peace and loving memories.

  5. Dear Mike, Mike Jr. and James William, my deepest sympathy goes out to you at this time at the loss of your beloved wife and dedicated, loving mother. Sandy, my twin, better known as “Bunkie” was gifted in school, sports and music. She was a sensitive, giving and caring person, especially to me. My heartfelt love and prayers are with you, as we have lost one great human being. I know she is at rest with the Lord in peace. We are all so sorry she had to battle her horrible illness. She did so gallantly, while serving the Lord, family and others. A friend to all. You have my sympathy and blessings.

  6. Keith & Sandy Gallagher

    Mike & Family, it is with a heavy heart we convey our condolences on the loss of Sandy. I remember you and Sandy in Texas that summer y’all met and saw the love and joy you both shared for one another. It was great that this love resulted marriage and two great sons. Knowing that she is no longer in pain and now in heaven with our Lord comforts us even as the tears roll down our face. Let me know if we can be of any service or assistance.

  7. My heart goes out to you and your family. I’ll always remember the Thanksgiving we shared with you in your home along with other friends back in 2000. Sandy will be missed.❤️

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