Sanford “Sandy” Kay Neal, age 70 of Tryon, passed away in the Sandhills, that he loved, on Saturday, June 10, 2017.
Sandy was born on February 5, 1947 in North Platte, NE to Archie and Cleo (Paxton) Neal. After graduating from McPherson County High School in 1964, he continued working on the family ranch. He married Margaret “Peggy” Kathryn Homan in North Platte on November 11, 1977, and the couple continued to ranch. In 1981 they remodeled and expanded Sandy’s grandfather’s house that was built around 1911, on the family homestead. That is where they raised their three children, Jeremy, Corey, and Stacy, and continued to live until his passing. In 1990 the family received the Nebraska Pioneer Farm Award, for 100 years of continuous family land ownership.
In May of 1995 Sandy and Peggy purchased Aunt Bea’s Café in Tryon, and continue to run it today. Sandy was a member of the Miller Cemetery Board and on the District #4 and #9 School Boards. He was also an active leader in 4-H and enjoyed helping his children with their projects.
Sandy was an avid reader, enjoyed spending time on the computer, especially researching genealogy, and was very good at leatherwork. He appreciated the outdoors and loved watching his birdfeeders and the wildlife. He had an eye for photography and delighted in checking the photos from his game cameras. He was very knowledgeable about the different birds, as well as the wildflowers, and enjoyed planting his own flowers. He liked the family trips to Wyoming and Colorado to fish for trout. He was detail oriented and a perfectionist in every way! He never knew a stranger and enjoyed visiting with people at the café. Sandy loved his family, and Dad was very proud of his children and their accomplishments; he will be greatly missed.
Sandy is survived by his wife Peggy of Tryon; children Jeremy Neal of Highland KS, Corey Neal of Wichita, KS and Stacy Neal of Rochester, MN; siblings Keith (Sharon) Neal of Pray, MT, Terry (Elnora) Neal of Tryon, Eugene Neal of North Platte, Doug Neal of North Platte, Gayle Neal of Tryon, Cheryl Neal of Terry, MT, and Kathleen (Kent) Fisher of Tryon; sister-in-law Ruth Neal of Pray, MT; brother-in-law Dick Schroeder of North Platte; uncle Kermit Paxton of North Platte; and mother-in-law Connie Homan of North Platte; as well as numerous other family members and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents Archie and Cleo Neal; brother Archie Duane Neal; sister Betty (Neal, Rodewald) Schroeder; brother-in-law Leland Rodewald; and father-in-law Marvin Homan.
Memorials are suggested to the McPherson County Rural Fire District or the McPherson County High School Alumni Scholarship. Online condolences may be shared at www.adamsswanson.com. Funeral services will be held 11:00 a.m. Friday June 16, 2017 at the Tryon High School with Pastor James Paine officiating. Burial will follow at the Miller Cemetery. Visitation will be from 9:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m. Thursday June 15, 2017 at Adams and Swanson Funeral Home, which is in charge of arrangements.