Born on March 12, 1939 to Frederick and Mona Lutes Dehner of Lincoln, Ill. This interview gives Sandy's reminiscences of her early years while her father was in the U.S. Army fighting in the South Pacific. Sandy talks about how her father's mobilization affected her mother, Mona Dehner, and the three young children her mother was caring for in Lincoln. Her father Frederick was deployed to Bougainville, leaving Mona with three children and no steady income except the allotment that Fred sent home every month. She received quite a bit of help from other relatives in town, especially Fred's brother and others. Sandy describes sending and receiving letters to her father, and her father's return from the war. Mona would pray nightly that her husband, who at 36 was quite old for a draftee, would get sick so he could come home early and escape the devastation of war. Ironically, Fred came down with a lung infection, was evacuated to the states, then spent several months stateside before he finally returned home. He eventually acquired pleurisy because of his wartime experiences.
From the description of An interview with Sandy Dehner-Wheeler / Sandy Dehner-Wheeler ; Mark R. DePue, interviewer. 2007. (Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library). WorldCat record id: 190865128
Born on Mar. 12, 1939 in Lincoln, Ill. and grew up there, taking every opportunity to use her considerable singing talents. Shortly after high school she married Bill Wheeler in 1958, soon started raising a family, and moved to Springfield, Ill. Sandy worked in a variety of jobs for the next two decades, and in 1964 also returned to her first love, and became active in Springfield community theater groups, starring in many musical productions. Over the next several years, Sandy stayed very busy, with raising a growing family, a working career, and a variety of charities. She also was very active in local theater, and in 1978 earned a role on the television mini-series "Awakening Land" starring Elizabeth Montgomery. That launched Sandy's theatrical career, primarily in stage productions in Chicago and Milwaukee. In 1978 she began working for the Rail Charity Golf Classic as a secretary. In 1980, when the tournament board of directors was looking for a new Executive Director, Sandy applied for the position, and was immediately selected. For the next twenty-seven years, her life revolved around the tournament, first known as the Rail Classic, and after 1993 as the State Farm Classic when the Bloomington, Ill.-based insurance company became the tournament's title sponsor. Among the LPGA's elite golfers who have played in Springfield are Nancy Lopez, Jo Anne Carner, Betsy King; Beth Daniel, Pearl Sinn and Annika Sorenstam. Wheeler finally stepped down from the position in 2005, a year that marked the tournament's 30th year.
From the description of An interview with Sandy Wheeler / Sandra Dehner-Wheeler ; Mark R. DePue, interviewer. 2008-2009. (Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library). WorldCat record id: 496141441