Sandra Kay Drake - 77

12/18/1942 - 12/19/2019

Byron, IL


Sandra Kay Drake was born at home on December 18th 1942 in Shannon Illinois, Sandra passed away Thursday December 19th 2019 after 77 years, surrounded by family.  After graduating from Illinois State University, Sandra was engaged October 12th, 1963 and soon joyfully married on July 31st, 1965 to Donald Drake of Forreston.  Since arriving to Byron in 1968, Sandra and her family have been members of the United Church of Christ in Byron.  Sandra helped numerous students in her 35 years of teaching having spent 3 years at Roberts-Thawville in Central Illinois before moving to the Byron School District in 1968 and teaching for 30 years before retiring in 1998.  As active members in the Byron community, Sandy and Don were awarded the 2000 Citizens of the Year award for their loyalty and service.  After being lifelong residents of Illinois, in 2013, Donald and Sandra moved to Audubon, PA to be closer to their immediate family.  Sandra was proceeded in death by her parents Clarence and Lucille Wirtjes of Shannon.  She is survived by her sister Karen Prasse (Wirtjes) of Athens, GA.  Donald Drake husband of 54 years, son Todd Drake (Philadelphia, PA) wife Denelle (Green) granddaughter Emerson 14 and son Troy Drake (Ashburn, VA) wife Traci (McDanel) grandson Dawson 20 (Bloomington, IN) and granddaughter Abbey 16.  A Celebration of Life Service in Memory of Sandra will be held at 11:00 am on Saturday, January 18, 2020 at the United Church of Christ in Byron, IL. A Gathering of Friends will take place at the church following the Celebration of Life Service.  In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting to direct all support to the Byron Foundation for Educational Excellence, which was established in 1994. Sandra was a founding board member and treasurer. As an expression of sympathy, memorial contributions may be made online via:  The Kiwanis Club of Byron is hosting the donation site, with all proceeds directly written to the Byron Foundation or checks can be made payable to Byron Foundation and mailed: Byron Foundation, PO Box 739, Byron, IL 61010  The Byron Foundation, a 501c3 was created by Sandra Drake and a group of forward-thinking community members dedicated to providing learning opportunities for students that were not covered by school district funds.  The originating board members had a long-term vision to enrich and supplement educational opportunities for Byron students in academics, fine arts, technology, careers, environmental, and social issues.  Because of the founding members and many volunteers dedication to educational excellence, the Byron Foundation continues to provide annual grants for the past 25-years to the Byron School community.

Gathering of Friends

A Gathering of Friends will take place following a Celebration of Life Service at the United Church of Christ in Byron, Illinois on Saturday, January 18, 2020.

Celebration of Life:

A Celebration of Life Service in Memory of Sandra will be 11:00 am on Saturday, January 18, 2020 at the United Church of Christ in Byron, IL.

View Sandra Kay Drake's Guestbook

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