Sandra Watson Schafer

Sandra Watson Schafer

SALISBURY — Sandra Watson Schafer, 90, a longtime resident of the Northwest Corner of Connecticut, passed away peacefully in her sleep on June 24, 2024, at her Noble Horizons cottage in Salisbury. She has joined her beloved dog, “Little Buddy,” and her parents in heaven.

Sandra was born to Paul and Bernice Watson on Jan. 30, 1934, in Rochester, Indiana. She had many fond memories of time spent with her older sister, Yvonne, growing up on the farmlands and, later, at her family home on Lake Manitou, Indiana. Graduating from DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana, Sandra later earned a master’s degree in Elementary Education from Connecticut State University. She was passionate about reading and education and was a beloved elementary school teacher in North Canaan and Falls Village. She was also a founding member and the first director of the Sharon Day Care Center in Sharon.

The Congregational Church of Falls Village was an important community to her, and Sandra made every effort to attend services and socialize with her church family. She was a supporter, fundraiser, and volunteer for many mission outreach programs, including the CROP Hunger Walk, Little Dresses of Africa, Warmth for Warriors, and The Prayer Shawl. She had a deep faith and quietly and spiritually touched all who knew her.

In her retirement, Sandra spent the winters in North Fort Myers, Florida, and summers at her home on Twin Lakes in Salisbury. She cherished the many family celebrations she hosted at her lake home, and the fond memories from those days remain with her children, grandchildren, and friends.

She loved to garden, sew, and knit, and she was also an avid reader and an enthusiastic tennis and ping pong player. She was a gifted painter, and her many watercolor paintings will be treasured for generations. Once she became a member of the Noble Horizons community, she flourished as she met new friends, joined clubs, attended functions, and loved to “work it out” at the fitness center.

Affectionately known as “Nana,” Sandra looked forward to attending family activities and celebrating holidays and special occasions. She is missed by her children; Charles Stair, Sheryl Knapp (Mark), Bob Stair (Ellen Eschbach), and David Stair (Debbie Bennett); her granddaughters, Keri Sullivan (Craig), Kelsey Markiewicz (Matt Easley), Erika Knapp, and Kaya Tilton; and her great-grandchildren. She is also survived by her sister, Yvonne Sowers, and her cousins, nieces and nephews. In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by her brother-in-law, Air Force LT. Col. Richard Sowers.

The Memorial Service to celebrate the life of Sandra has been postponed from July 6, 2024, to a later date. There will be notification of the new date in the Lakeville Journal. Arrangements are entrusted to Newkirk-Palmer Funeral Home, Canaan, CT.

In lieu of flowers, Sandra asked that donations be made in her honor to the following: Falls Village Congregational Church (FVCC), PO Box 72, Falls Village, CT 06031 ( or the Jane Lloyd Fund, Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation, 800 North Main St, Sheffield, MA 01257-9503 (

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