Janice L. (Valentine) Sandberg, 88, formerly of Wausau, passed away on Friday, January 26, 2023, at The Heritage in Appleton.
She was born to the late Gerald and Violet (Nelson) Valentine in Suring, Wisconsin, where she grew up with her brother Jack and sister Judy. Janice spent summers of her teen years as a lifeguard at Kelly Lake and was a drum majorette for the Suring High School band. In the summer of 1954, before returning to college at UW-La Crosse, she fell in love with her childhood friend, John Sandberg. They parted briefly while she finished college and he served in the army, but their love letters during that time sealed their bond and live on to this day. They married in Suring on June 8, 1957.
Always, education was Janice’s passion. She married an educator and was a teacher herself, first in elementary education and physical education with the Wausau School District and Newman High School. She pursued her love of learning and books by returning to UW-La Crosse in 1983 where she earned a master’s degree in library science, always intending to use her new skills in a school setting. She served as the librarian at Tomahawk High School, then D.C. Everest High School until her retirement in 1997. Janice instilled the importance of education in her five children and nine grandchildren and generously established a college fund for each one. A lifetime learner, she continued to read voraciously until her death.
Janice was a determined career woman, and a devoted wife and mother. She loved to travel, and she and John managed many road trips across the country with five children, dogs, a station wagon, and a pop-up camper in tow. In later years, she traveled to many more far away destinations, such as China, New Zealand, Sweden, Netherlands, Ireland, and France, and established a winter home in Arizona. She was always on the go, independent and eager to learn new things.
Janice is survived by her children, John (Verna) Sandberg, Mary Sandberg (Andy Tautges), Joel (Karon) Sandberg, Brian (Kris) Sandberg, and Kerry Sandberg Arndt; grandchildren, Jamie Sandberg, Kathy McCarthy, Kristy McCarthy (Cris Choquet), Brandon Tautges, Derek Sandberg (Mallory McShane), Claire (Nash) Sanderson, Anna Sandberg, Ryan (Rachel) Arndt, and Ross (Teona) Arndt; a great grandchild, Barrett; her siblings Jack (Darlene) Valentine, and Judy (Ted) Knapp; as well as many nieces, nephews, and friends.
She is preceded in death by her husband, John Sandberg; and parents, Violet and Gerald Valentine.
A small, private family service was held on Monday, January 29 at Wichmann Funeral Home in Fox Crossing. An internment and celebration of life with her many grandchildren and friends will be held at a later date in Wausau. If you would like to be notified of that service when it is announced, please sign Janice’s guest book as details will be updated as they become available.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in her name to your favorite school or school district foundation.