Brandon, Sara McGonegle September 25, 1959 January 23, 2014 Sara M. Brandon of Farmers Branch, TX died at Presbyterian Hospital Dallas on January 23, 2014, at the age of 54 years, following our 4-year battle with cancer. Sara is survived by her daughter in whom she took special pride, Lily Pruitt, a high school agricultural technology teacher in Sinton, Texas; her husband, David Brandon of Farmers Branch, Texas; siblings and their spouses - Julie Knoepp of St. Louis, Missouri; Paul and Jane McGonegle of Grand Mound, IA; John McGonegle of Blue Grass, IA; Mary McGonegle of Traverse City, MI; Greg McGonegle of Maquoketa, IA; Peg McGonegle of Pensacola, FL; Joe McGonegle of Lost Nation, IA; Jane and Dan Lawrence of Monticello, IA; and, many nieces and nephews spread across the globe. Sara developed a special bond with her niece, Carey Butler, and her children (Alex, Lanie and Lauren) after their move to North Texas. She was preceded in death by her parents and brother Marty. Sara was born in Maquoketa, Iowa: one of ten children and the youngest daughter of Joseph and Margaret McAndrews McGonegle. She graduated from Lost Nation High School; and attended Central College and Iowa State University before relocating to Texas where Sara completed her degree at Southwest Texas State University. Nonetheless, she remained a Cyclone at heart devoted to the farming heritage of her family and her native Iowa. Sara struggled with Type I diabetes for much of her life but remained undaunted. In many ways, that insidious disease spurred her remarkable work ethic and continual pursuit of excellence. Sara worked in the health insurance and benefits field for many years. She was acknowledged by senior executives, clients, co-workers and all with whom she came in contact as a consummate professional and expert in her field. Sara was a Senior Health and Benefits Analyst with Mercer Dallas at the time of her death: a position that she found the most fulfilling of her career and in which she developed many enduring friendships. Sara never met a stranger. She was an insatiable reader with a special bent for science fiction. She was fascinated with the night sky and the incredible possibilities it conjured. Sara loved her Greyhounds and enlightened many more of us to their grace, sweetness and extraordinary history. She rescued three in her time - her very special companions Blade, Buddy and Trinity - and would have shared her home with many more. She was an enthusiastic Rangers fan and softball player remembered as having an arm not to be challenged. Sara loved the outdoors, almost all wildlife (the exceptions being the occasional skunks that her dogs brought home), long walks along the Trinity and adventures in the country so long as there was a shower within reach. Contributions will be appreciated in her name to Operation Kindness, Wounded Warriors, the
. A memorial service in Iowa will be held at a later date to be announced.
Published in Dallas Morning News on Mar. 23, 2014