Official Obituary of

Sandra Wishart Dearnley

April 21, 1944 ~ September 26, 2023 (age 79) 79 Years Old

Sandra Dearnley Obituary

Sandra Wishart Dearnley of Midlothian, Virginia, passed away on September 26th, 2023, at the age of 79 after a brief battle with cancer.

Sandy was born on April 21st, 1944, in Summit, NJ to Robert Alexander Wishart and Mary Catherine Browne Wishart. She graduated from Milburn High School in NJ and attended Bethany College. She married shortly after college and began her life’s work of being a mother to her beloved sons, Rob & Scott. To say she excelled at this job would be an understatement. Throughout the years, she became a mother of sorts to many of her son’s friends and was affectionately known as “Mamma D.”

After her sons, her next greatest love was her animals. This passion for animals and her giving spirit led her to animal rescue, where she was foster intake coordinator for SEVA GRREAT for many years.  Later in life she volunteered at Cat’s Cradle, run by her daughter-in-law, Nancy. Gardening was another passion.  Sandy had a green thumb and could grow just about anything. She was highly creative and loved to make cards for people on her computer. Blessed with a great sense of humor, Sandy loved sending hilarious jokes and memes to friends and family. Cooking was another area where Sandy excelled.  Nothing made her happier than finding a new recipe and making it for someone.  Sandy also had a bit of cowgirl in her; country line dancing and two stepping were favorite hobbies and she did line dancing classes right up until her passing. She loved her home and property in Poquoson on Bayview Dr. where she raised her sons and lived for 50 of her 79 years.  It was known to be open and welcoming to all.

Sandy was preceded in death by her parents, Robert and Catherine Wishart, and her sister, Jean Wishart Kearney. She is survived by her two sons, Robert Charles Dearnley (Brandi Hollenbeck) and Scott MacFarland Dearnley (Nancy Youngblood Dearnley), her grandchildren, James Alexander Dearnley and Grace Catherine Dearnley, her niece Wendy Crane Hiby, and many beloved relatives in Scotland where her father was from. One of her greatest joys was her grandchildren. She loved them fiercely and played a large role in their upbringing.

Her family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be made in her memory to Southeastern Virginia Golden Retriever Rescue, Education, and Training Inc. Please mail checks to PO Box 8014 Yorktown, VA 23693.  Donations can also be made online at 

Sandy’s celebration of life will be held on Saturday, September 30th at 10:30 am at the Claytor Rollins Funeral Home (836 Poquoson Ave, Poquoson, VA 23662).  Following the service — beginning at noon — all are welcome to attend a reception in Sandy’s honor at Saisaki (101 Regal Way, Newport News, 23602) to greet the family.

Arrangements and heartfelt guidance through Claytor Rollins Funeral Home.

Online condolences to

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Sandra Wishart Dearnley, please visit our floral store.

Friends and family have shared their relationship to show their support.
How do you know Sandra Wishart Dearnley?
We are sorry for your loss.
Help others honor Sandra's memory.


Celebration of Life
September 30, 2023

10:30 AM
Claytor Rollins Funeral Home

Gathering of Family and Friends
September 30, 2023

12:00 PM to 4:00 PM
101 Regal Way
Newport News, VA 23602


Southeastern Virginia Golden Retriever Rescue, Education, and Training, Inc.
P.O. Box 8014, Yorktown VA 23693
Tel: 1-757-827-8561


© 2024 Claytor Rollins Funeral Home and Crematory. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS & TA | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Accessibility