Memorial Service
Hance Chapel
Texas Tech University
Lubbock, TX  79410
Friday, October 12, 2012
3:00-4:00 p.m.
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Sandra Arlene River

of Lubbock, TX

February 22, 1950 - May 12, 2012

  • Obituary
  • Guestbook
Sandra Arlene River (Sandy), a long time Texas Tech University librarian and past president of the Faculty Senate, passed away on Saturday, May 12, 2012 at the age of 62. She was born on February 22, 1950 in Lakeville, Minnesota to the late Walt and Eunice River. Her education includes a B.A. in Political Science from Mankato State University (1972), an A.A. (Legal Assistant) from North Hennepin Community College (1976), an M.S. in Library Science from the University of North Texas (1990) and an M.A. in Philosophy from Texas Tech University (1993). Sandy moved to Lubbock and began working at Texas Tech University Libraries in 1977. Throughout the years, she worked as head of Current Periodicals/Microforms, acting head of Acquisitions, Information Services Librarian, and liaison for English, Philosophy, and Women's Studies. Since 2003, Sandy was the Public Services Librarian in the Architecture Library.

Sandy was active in professional organizations at the state and national level. Her honors include the Association of College and Research Libraries Women's Studies Section Career Achievement Award in 2007. She was selected as a Texas Library Association Tall Texan (Texas Accelerated Library Leadership Institute) in 1998. Sandy had a distinguished career of service to Texas Tech. She was active in the Women's Studies Council and Advisory Committee; she served in the Faculty Senate (1995-1998, 2007-2012), including terms as President and Parliamentarian. She was recently elected as Faculty Senate Secretary for 2012-2013.

She is survived by her partner of 15 years, Brian Quinn of Lubbock and her brother Walt River of Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Memorial services will be 3:00 - 4:00 p.m. on Friday, October 12, 2012 at Hance Chapel on the Texas Tech University Campus.

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59 Condolence(s)
Susan Tillman
Las Cruces, NM
Friday, December 12, 2014

For the family of Marilyn Marie B. Thompson: It was sad and unexpected to read of Marilyn's early passing. We were friends in high school, spent weekends together, talked about horses, kids, cousing, everything. So happy when she met/married Tommy! She was always a good heart and will be deeply missed by anyone who knew her.

Beth Glass
Lubbock, TX
Monday, January 27, 2014

S uper smart
A cademic librarian
N eighbor in Tech Terrace
D edicated to Brian
Y ou are missed

R esponsible and reliable
I n tune with faculty needs
V erbal to fight for them
E xcellence exemplified
R are friend indeed

jim white
lubbock, TX
Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Sandy was so helpful to me in the Library. I miss seeing her and going to her for help. She was a neighbor of mine and I miss seeing her walking the block. I prayed for her during her time of illness, and she will always be a part of the college.

John White
Lubbock, TX
Tuesday, January 21, 2014

I miss seeing Sandy in the Library and seeingthe two of you walk each day. Sandy was always workingin the front yard.
My synpathy to you in this loss.

John White

Gerry Matison
newburyport, MA
Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Rest in peace, Sandy. I have so many fond memories.

Warmest thoughts to Walt and Brian.

Gerry Matison

Roger Moore
Huxley, IA
Friday, August 24, 2012

Having met Sandy only twice in 33 years my personal relationship with her was limited to my being a mail delivery person. I would collect her weekly letters to my wife Deb and mail Deb's letters to her.
I knew her only as a trusted friend to my wife, a person Deb could confide in without being judged or lectured. I especially appreciated Sandy's letters when Deb was having a troubling or down week because she would know that someone other then me cared about how she felt.
I still find myself looking for a letter from Sandy

Midlothian, VA
Thursday, August 16, 2012

So long my friend.


Loretta Nuessle
St. Paul, MN
Thursday, August 16, 2012

Hello Brian,

I am so sorry to hear of Sand's death. We were friends since we were little girls in Lakeville and attended Mankato together. Since then we have taken different paths, but it was always so good to hear from here. I will miss her. Loretta

Lubbock, TX
Sunday, August 5, 2012

Dear Brian, It was with pleasure Cal and I learned that you and Sandy would be our back door neighbors. Although we mostly know each other in passing, as others have said we all found comfort in knowing the two of you were walking around the neighborhood greeting those you passed. Recently I found myself on committees and organizations with Sandie and was looking forward to getting to know her better. Now I look forward to knowing her through you as we take walks around the neighborhood and maybe bike rides in the canyon. It is amazing how those who knew Sandie briefly and those who knew her well all knew her smile and uplifting attitude. She will be missed by all but her memory may help the rest of us be a little more patient and a little more kind to others. See you around the neighborhood. May time bring you peace and acceptance and warm memories with only a tinge of sadness. Your backdoor neighbor, Melanie (and Cal)

Joe & Gail DiPaola
Rocky Point,, NY
Monday, July 30, 2012

Dear Brian,

Please accept our sincere condolences on the loss of
your partner, and love; Sandy.

Repectfully Yours,
Joe & Gail DiPaola

Kirk Gordon
Dallas, TX
Monday, July 2, 2012

I was deeply saddened to hear of /Sandy's passing...she had fought and won a valiant battle. To have lost her in such an unexpected and sudden time must intensify your sense of loss.
I will always remember her smile and gracious ways!
You will continue to be in my prayers and thoughts.
Kirk Gordon

Posie Aagaard
San Antonio, TX
Wednesday, June 13, 2012

What others have written is true: Sandy had a smile for everyone. The people she worked with and those she served valued both her cheerful outlook and her exceptional objectivity.

Sandy was dependable, efficient, and practical - but she quite admirably 'walked to the beat of her own drum.'

Boy, will we miss her.

There are few people who have such a lovely connection as Brian's and Sandy's. Brian, I know that you have lost more than a beloved partner and friend.

Deborah Milosevich
Lubbock, TX
Tuesday, June 12, 2012

I have been out of the country and just heard about Sandy. I am so sorry and will miss seeing the two of you take your evening walk...holding hands.

Auburn, AL
Monday, June 4, 2012

I met Sandy quite a long time ago--in 1980, when I was an undergraduate at Texas Tech. I would study every day in the library, close to the reserve desk where she worked. After she had noticed me as a "regular" Sandy struck up a conversation and we soon became great friends. I think the way we met indicates the kind of person Sandy was--observant, interested in others, and willing to reach out to people, even strangers. She will be greatly missed.

Joehassin Cordero
Lubbock, TX
Saturday, June 2, 2012

She will always be in our memory...

Paul Paré
Lubbock, TX
Friday, June 1, 2012

In addition to Sandra professional career she was an avid walker comuting to work as well as strolling the parks of Tech Terrace. It was always a treat to stop and visit with Sandra and Brian during their walks. Her good spirit will be missed by her friends and neighbors.

Tess Trost
Lubbock, TX
Thursday, May 31, 2012

During the years that Sandy and I worked together at the Texas Tech library, we were friends as well as colleagues. We served on committes, attended conferences and went to many, many meetings. Sandy was always the consumate professional who shared her knowledge and skills.

After I retired, we would occasionally meet at J&B for coffee in the early afternoon and then all of a sudden it would be late and we still had more to tell each other. I will miss our good times.

Elizabeth Rylander
Lubbock, TX
Thursday, May 31, 2012

Sandy always brightened my day. When I would be in the front yard and she and Brian would walk by, she would give me a cheery greeting. She always knew the right thing to say on each occasion. She was truly a rare person and a pleasure to know and have as a neighbor. We'll all miss Sandy. So sorry, Brian, for your loss of such a lovely treasure. Liz Rylander

Cheryl and Fred Weber
Lubbock, TX
Sunday, May 27, 2012

We are so shocked to hear of Sandy's passing. Surely it was just a few days ago that we saw her and Brian walking around Texas Tech park, Sandy smiling and making others feel comfortable. She accomplished so much, loved work, and was humble. Her cheerfulness lulled us into thinking that all was going well with her challenge of cancer. But of course, Sandy was stoic and un-complaining. Bless her. May she have peace.

Roger Rainwater
Fort Worth, TX
Saturday, May 26, 2012

The world is colder and darker since she's no longer with us. The bright light of her life warmed our lives. Rest in peace, old friend. See you on the other side.

Liz Applin
Lubbock, TX
Thursday, May 24, 2012

Sandy was one of the first people I met when I began working at the Library in '81. I can truthfully say that I never saw her without a smile on her face -- even when she had reason not to have one. My memories of her will always be pleasant ones. She cherished you, Brian, and I know you cherished her. You were blessed to have each other. Take care of yourself, and may God watch over you.

Earnstein Dukes
Lubbock, TX
Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Sandy will be missed, she made notable contributions to her profession and was respected as a member of the TTU community. Brain, may you find peace and comfort in having shared your life with her.

, TX
Wednesday, May 23, 2012

I am so sorry we lost an amazing woman. It was an honor being able to care for her the last couple of years. My prayers and thoughts are with you.

Karen Clark
Lubbock, TX
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Dear Brian: My thoughts are with you, and my door always open to you whenever you need a walk. I wish I had the chance to know Sandy; the way you speak of her is beautiful and touching and so from your speech and your face, I know she must have been a very special and rare person indeed. To end my thoughts to you and Sandy by sharing a quote that is on Raymond Carver's tombstone:

And did you get what
you wanted from this life, even so?
I did.
And what did you want?
To call myself beloved, to feel myself
beloved on the earth.

Brian, in the short time I've known you, I can observe that Sandy was one of those blessed to have felt loved and beloved by you on this earth. A lovely thing indeed.

Diana King
Los Angeles, CA
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

I had the pleasure of knowing Sandy through her work with the ACRL Women and Gender Studies Section, and am so sorry to hear of her passing. Sandy was kind, friendly, and a substantive participant in any committee or task. She was also just a terrific colleague, and will be missed.

Janie Boyd
Lubbock, TX
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Sandy was a dear friend. I remember one time we were going through a big change in the library and I was worried. The next day Sandy brought me the book titled "Who Moved My Cheese?" She always had a way to cheer me up and bring a smile on my face. I will truly miss her. Brian, you are in my prayers.

Laura Baake
Lubbock, TX
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

My thoughts and warm wishes are with you during this sad time. I know Sandy meant the world to you. She seems like a special person indeed and I know you will miss her always.

Theresa A. Tobin
Cambridge, MA
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Sandy was my colleague in the Women's and Gender Study Section of ACRL. She was warm, funny, and inclusive. I will miss her at ALA meetings. I hope, Brian, that you have many happy memories and many family members with whom to share her stories.

Susie Sappington
Arlington, TX
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Brian and Walt,
My heart brims with sorrow over your loss.
Sandy was my closest friend, my confidante, my colleague, and my rock. I admired her intelligence and her strength of character; she knew who she was and was uncompromising in her principles. I am a better person than I'd be if I hadn't kept company with Sandy for 35 years. She loved me and accepted me in spite of my flaws, and I learned much from her. She was a great listener, and taught by example.
I will miss her terribly. I think of her every day. Someone recently told me that memory is grief’s only friend. If that be the case, then my grief has many friends who visit and me constantly. I hope that one day our memories will overcome our sense of loss.

Jennifer Mayer
, WY
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

I met Sandy via the ACRL Women & Gender Studies Section. I greatly appreciated her kind, supportive and capable presence.
To all those close to Sandy, thinking of you.

Betty Thies
Apple Valley, MN
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Sandy River was the best friend a girl could have growing up. Sandy was born the day after I was. We had an enchanted childhood in our town of less than 1000 people. Every day was an adventure as we caught tadpoles, built cardboard forts, played paperdolls and, of course, went to school and church. Sandy had many talents and was the most intelligent person I have known. She displayed incredible humility throughout her life. In all of our years of friendship, we never had an argument. I will love her and miss her every day of my life. Thank you, Brian, for being her loving partner.

Dolores Fidishun
West Chester, PA
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

I got to know Sandy through ACRL/WSS but we became friends as well as colleagues. Sandy was wise, knowledgeable about librarianship and life, and was always willing to do anything that needed to be done. Her positivity, even when going through her own physical struggles, was an inspiration to all of us, particularly to me. I am so glad we could recognize a bit of what she gave to us through her well-earned Career Achievement Award which probably should have been called a "Life Achievement Award." My prayers are with Brian and all those who were close to her. We have lost a remarkable woman and I will truly miss her!

Albert Camp
Lubbock, TX
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

I remember an August morning in 1990. We were going on a retreat to Junction. You were an old-timer in the library but had just become the newest professional, and everyone was congratulating you. You smiled and laughed—you were happy. Whenever I think of you, that’s what I will remember: your smile, the glow on your face, and most of all the laughter. Rest well, Sandy.

Megan Brooks
Natick, MA
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Sandy's warm and welcoming nature, along with her ability to get things done, made working within the ACRL Women's Studies Section such fun. She always had kind words of encouragement for me and many others. I am blessed to have known her. My thoughts are with you, Brian, during this difficult time.

Jane Nichols
, OR
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Although I only knew Sandy briefly through the ACRL Women's Studies Section, I was so sorry to hear of her passing. I appreciated her wit and her willingness to share her experience and time. thoughts & prayers...

Kelly Barrick
New Haven, CT
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Sandy was a colleague through our past work in women's studies librarianship. I always appreciated her quiet willingness to offer guidance and her great sense of humor. Her smile and laughter were infectious and her humor much appreciated. My thoughts go out to Brian who may find some solace and peace in the undoubtedly fond memories.

Barb Berge
, MN
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Sandy and I were roommates at Mankato State College.
It was the best thing that could have happened to me. We spent those years growing, learning, and laughing our way through turbulent times. When our lives took us in different geographic directions we kept in contact and whenever we connected it seemed the passage of time was not an issue. I loved her intelligence, her warmth and her loyalty; basically everything about her. I have known no one else like her and will miss her more than I can say. Brian, I hope all your wonderful memories will help you deal with Sandy's passing. I know how much this loss hurts me, I can't begin to think how it must be for you. I will keep you in my prayers.

Pamela M Salela
, IL
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Sandy epitomized the best of the library profession as well as the best of professional ethics. She was a committed ad stanch advocate of women's rights and a colleague whose contributions touch those well beyond her immediate sphere. Her influence reverberates and therefore is constant. Peace and healing thoughts to her family in this time of grief.

Connie Phelps
New Orleans, LA
Monday, May 21, 2012

I am another of Sandy's long-time colleagues from the ACRL Women's Studies Section. I was sorry to hear the news of her passing. I will very much miss seeing her at ALA conferences and working with her on committees. I will always remember her smile when I saw her at meetings. After Hurricane Katrina, she would send me emails saying that she and Brian were thinking of me and always had to get an update on what the status of the recovery was - both New Orleans' and mine. Thinking of you, Brian.

Sally Weimer
Ventura, CA
Monday, May 21, 2012

Sandy was an excellent women's studies librarian and I had the pleasure of working with her on the Assoc. of College & Research Libraries, Women's studies section committees.
I learned much from her and she will be greatly missed. Thank you.

Kayo Denda
New Brunswick, NJ
Monday, May 21, 2012

I had the pleasure to meet Sandy through our professional library organization Women and Gender Studies Section, where she had been very active over the years. I admired her stamina, grace and commitment to the profession. She mentored me and numerous other newcomers to the section being always very supportive. She was a great colleague. We will miss her very much.

Donna and William McDonald
Lubbock, TX
Monday, May 21, 2012

We have been friends for such a long time. We've seen and shared some wonderful things - as friends and as colleagues. You have brought so much joy and certainly your own special insight to everything - everyday. Your friendship is one that we have both cherished. Although time presses forward, the light of your life will continue to shine brightly within our hearts. We move forward each day.... none of us knowing the future, yet knowing there will be many a sorrowful good-bye; along life's amazingly short journey. We can only reflect and learn from your loving example of how to truly live in peace. For our beautiful friend - you have taught us well and we are grateful.

With Love and Peace,

Donna and Bill McDonald and Family.

Joseph Yeager
, TX
Monday, May 21, 2012

I didn't know Sandy particularly well, but I do know she was a very bright and witty lady. And I know Brian loved her very much. I pray that Brian's grief passes quickly and in its place appear warm and glowing embers of the memories he has of his departed beloved.

Sue Searing
Urbana, IL
Monday, May 21, 2012

Such sad news. Sandy was one of my "constants" in the ACRL Women's Studies Section. I deeply appreciated her commitment to the profession and to women's equality, and her unique blend of unflagging optimism seasoned with well-aimed sarcastic wit. She will be missed.

, TX
Monday, May 21, 2012

Sandy was one teffific person who had a first-rate mind and a great character.

Cynthia Henry
Lubbock, TX
Monday, May 21, 2012

May you find comfort and strength in the memories you shared with Sandy. You have my deepest sympathies. She will be greatly missed.

Lisa Gonzales
Lubbock, TX
Monday, May 21, 2012

Brian my thoughts and prayers are with you during this time.

Rob Weiner
Lubbock, TX
Monday, May 21, 2012

Sandy was my first boss when I worked at the TTU library as a Library Specialist some 20 years ago. She was always honest and straightforward with me. I appreciated her candor and directing me to perform to the best of my ability. I will forever remember her as an outgoing person who always stood her ground. When I got the job of Humanities Librarian, Sandy was one of the first people to congratulate me.
Brian, my thoughts are with you my friend. You and Sandy are a fine example of couple who loved and cared for each other deeply.

John Brown
Lubbock, TX
Monday, May 21, 2012

Sandy was a good friend and will be greatly missed!

Jack Becker
, TX
Monday, May 21, 2012

I think of Sandy as a hard working and a courageous person who was good leader and dependable colleague. She taught me alot by her personal example and dedication to the library profession. She will be missed by the Tech community and the library profession.

Phyllis Holman Weisbard
Madison, WI
Friday, May 18, 2012

Sandy and I saw each other at American Library Association conferences, particularly at our Women and Gender Studies Section events. Sandy and I would smile broadly and compare notes on surviving cancer another year. And then we'd move on to talking about other aspects of our lives. Sandy was always so much more than her disease. I admired her stamina, determination., dedication to her work, and cheerfulness. I will miss her.

Deb Moore
Huxley, IA
Friday, May 18, 2012

God doesn't make many people like Sandy, and those of us lucky enough to have her in our lives, while we will always miss her, have been blessed by her presence. Sandy's great strength, for me, was her faith in people and her willingness to listen. She never said, in the 40+ years that I knew her, "This is what you should do." (And Sandy listened to a LOT, in 40+ years...) She knew I'd figure things out, and until I did, she journeyed with me. The best tribute I can think of for Sandy, is to "be Sandy" for other people we meet along the way. We're all in this together.

Kathrin Dodds
Ridgefield, WA
Thursday, May 17, 2012

Our thoughts and prayers are with you Brian. Sandy was a wonderful friend, spectacular faculty member and all-around good person. She will be missed but her memories and accomplishments will live on.

Dominique Gagnon
Lubbock, TX
Thursday, May 17, 2012

Dear Brian
I'm so sad for your lost, I know how hard it must be. I wish you peace and recomfort during this hard period of life.
With Deepest Sympathies.

Lisa Garner Santa
Lubbock, TX
Thursday, May 17, 2012

Dear Brian, May you find strength and peace during this time. Know that you are loved by many who are here for you. We will all miss Sandy and also feel so blessed to have had her in our lives, directly or indirectly. In consolation, Lisa

Carrye and Jake Syma
Lubbock, TX
Wednesday, May 16, 2012

We will always cherish the memories we have of Sandy. Our thoughts are with you.

Minerva Alaniz
Lubbock, TX
Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Sandy was such an inspiring person. She helped me understand the Promotion and Tenure process. I will be eternally grateful for that. I will miss seeing her smiling face and the "hellos" when I would see her.

Donell Callender
Lubbock, TX
Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Thinking of you, Brian.

Edward Steinhart
Norfolk, VA
Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Fond memories will always attach to Sandy's name. Her sympathetic ear in times of trouble, her helpful and wise advice in personal and academic matters made her a dear friend and an admired colleague.