Sandra L. Greenfield
Sandra Lee Greenfield (nee Harris), child of God and sister in Christ, was called home to heaven on Saturday, November 29, 2014, at the age of 76 years.
Sandy was born in Benton Harbor, Michigan, on June 25, 1938, to Howard Lester and Lillian (Pudell) Harris. She was baptized at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Sodus, Michigan, on August 7, 1938, and later confirmed there on April 6, 1952.
Sandy graduated from high school at Michigan Lutheran Seminary in 1956. She attended Dr. Martin Luther College and earned a master’s degree in 1978 from the University of Wisconsin−Milwaukee, graduating summa cum laude.
Sandy’s ministry career began with an emergency call as an elementary school teacher at St. Paul’s in Saginaw, Michigan, in 1958. After that, she taught at Redemption, Bethesda, Siloah, Jordan, Fairview and St. John’s Lutheran schools. While at Bethesda, Sandy and her husband, Gary, were instrumental in the development of Siloah Lutheran School following a debate in which the congregation decided if Siloah should build a school for education or a bowling alley for recreation. Gary became Siloah’s first principal in 1962, and Sandy accepted a call to teach there. She also served side-by-side with her husband when he became the first school coordinator for the Wisconsin Lutheran High School Conference in 1970 and when he accepted the call to be the first full-time president of Wisconsin Lutheran College in 1975 until his retirement 28 years later in 2003.
Sandy went the extra distance spending countless hours preparing for her classes, tutoring students, writing school musicals and plays, and working with people who requested her help. She cared deeply about her students. The personal letters they wrote to her while she was in the hospital were profoundly moving. One student wrote that Sandy was his best friend. He added that she was the best teacher in the whole world and the whole school.
Former students frequently told her children stories about the impact she had on their lives. Students often recalled memorable field trips that involved a stop at her house. The recollections of the youthful field trips are always sparse, but every former student remembered three things. Everyone got a popsicle and a hot dog, and it was “the best field trip ever.”
Sandy had a passion for writing, public speaking, and coaching young parents and teachers. She was a published author, and her work included co-authoring “The Simplified Catechism” for the church. Her children were surprised to discover her work translated into foreign languages while traveling abroad.
A voracious reader, Sandy sped through historical novels in one sitting. She enjoyed painting and other artistic endeavors, cooking, gardening, New York Times Crossword Puzzles, and watching her grandchildren play and coach sports.
She had a sense of adventure and relished taking cross-country trips on the back of Gary’s hog and traveling abroad. She sewed her daughter-in-law’s wedding dress and any costume or outfit that her children wanted. She was a long-time member of the Wauwatosa Beautification Committee. She lived her faith through her volunteer work and generous stewardship.
On August 9, 1959, Sandy married Gary Greenfield at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church of Sodus, Michigan. They were blessed with four children.
Sandy was preceded in death by her husband of 45 years. She is the beloved mother of Jim (Kathy), Mark, Wendy and Kristyn; grandchildren, Erin, Alayna and Brianna; sister Linda (Dave) Hoover; sister-in-law Joyce Strunk; and nieces, nephews, and other relatives and friends. She was preceded in death by her father, Howard Lester Harris; her mother, Lillian Harris; her brothers, John and James Harris; and sister-in-law Marge (Ben) Inoshita.
We look forward to being reunited in heaven with our loving mother, grandmother, aunt and friend.
In lieu of flowers, memorials to Wisconsin Lutheran College Gary and Sandra Greenfield Christian Leadership Scholarship or St. John’s Lutheran School are appreciated.
“Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.”