Rebecca S. Brandon (1941 - 2015)

Obituary
  • "Miss you"
  • "I haven't seen Rebecca in years but she was my handling..."
    - Gail Tutt
  • "I met Becky at Walter Reed when I was stationed at Walter..."
    - Greg Bartoshuk
  • "One tough lady...form follows function. Thank you for the..."
    - linda cunningham
  • "It's a special feeling to know someone for such a short..."
    - John Rocco

Anchorage, Alaska, resident Rebecca "Beki" Sue Bandon died peacefully on June 7, 2015, at the age of 74, of natural causes at Providence Hospital, surrounded by her friends. Rebecca was born on April 25, 1941, in Searcy, Ark., to James Walter Brandon Sr. and Mary Agnes Spear Brandon. An only child for many years, her brother James Jr. was born in the late 1950s to complete the Brandon family. Having traveled the world during her life, it was Alaska that became Rebecca's home. Due to her father being in the Army for 32 years, her education was varied: elementary and junior high school were attended in Heidelberg, Germany, post World War II. She then graduated from East High School in Salt Lake City, Utah, and went on to Colorado Woman's College in Denver, Colo. This was followed by her attendance at Mt. Carmel School of Nursing in Pittsburg, Kansas. In 1964, Rebecca was commissioned as a 2nd Lt. into the U.S. Army Nurse Corp by her father. Rebecca accomplished much in her five year military career. She completed basic training in Ft. Sam, Houston, Texas, and basic operating room training at Letterman General Hospital, San Francisco, Calif. Rebecca was then assigned to the operating room at Fitzsimons General Hospital in Denver, Colo. This was followed by an assignment to the Vietnam 3rd Field Hospital, Saigon, Vietnam. During this time, Rebecca Sue Brandon earned the Vietnam Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal and Army Commendation Medal. She then returned to the United States for her final assignment at Ft. Benning General Hospital in Columbus, Ga., followed by an honorable discharge. Rebecca resigned her reserve Army commission as a Captain in 1970. Wanting to go back to school, she attended the Nurse Anesthetist School at Temple University in Philadelphia, Penn. Rebecca Brandon worked as a nurse anesthetist and completed 32 years of Federal Service. She spent 12 years at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington D.C., and 20 years at Alaska Native Medical Center in Anchorage. Not ready to retire completely, Rebecca went on to work for the Anesthesia Associates at Alaska Regional Hospital until August of 2009. Rebecca's second passion in life was the art of purebred dogs. She was an exceptional conformation handler, dog breeder and trainer. She was well known for both her success in this genre and her depth and breadth of knowledge. It was in her appreciation of this art that Rebecca cultivated her greatest gift. Rebecca Sue Brandon was, above all else, a mentor and a teacher. She was generous with both her time and knowledge and quick to recognize the undeveloped promise in others. Those Rebecca taught learned to believe one's best was not good enough, but merely a marker to be surpassed. The unrecognized greatness held within us all was what Rebecca demanded from those she guided. It is what she also gave to her career, her country, her art and to those fortunate enough to call her friend. Survivors include her brother, James Jr.; sister-in-law, Margaret Brandon; niece, Rachael; and nephews, Matthew and Kyle. Rebecca Brandon was preceded in death by her life partner, Babetta Veater; and her parents, James Sr. and Mary Brandon. A Celebration Life will be published at a later date.
Published in Anchorage Daily News on June 16, 2015