Dennis John Sand, 69, Albany
May 14, 1953 - June 25, 2022
Dennis J. Sand, age 69 of Albany, passed away peacefully with his family by his side on Saturday, June 25, 2022. Dennis was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2017, he had a stroke in March of 2021. A Mass of Christian burial will be held at 11a.m. Friday, July 8 at Seven Dolors Catholic Church in Albany. Visitation will be held from 9:00-10:45 a.m. prior to Mass in the Church Gathering Area.
Dennis was born on May 14, 1953 to Ervin and Elizabeth (Kraemer) Sand. He grew up on a small family farm on the northwest side of Albany. He spent his younger years working on the farm and for the family businesses. Dennis spoke fondly of growing up on the farm, he would share stories of the trouble he was always getting into with his siblings. He also enjoyed playing football and wrestling in high school. After graduating from the Albany High School, he worked at the local radio station, KASM. He loved working with Cliff & Clyde and dreamed of life as a radio DJ! Dennis also worked at the Albany Telephone Company.
Dennis met Joan Gerads on a blind date that was set up by Jim and Jean Sand at the KASM Christmas party. They married on October 25, 1975 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Upsala. When they were first married Dennis’ interest in politics was sparked when he took a job driving and working for a candidate for the US House of Representatives. After that he worked for Sand-Mitchell-Smith construction company. From there Dennis and his wife went into business with his parents, building and running the Sands Restaurant for 20 years! Later they purchased and ran Freeway Liquors until his retirement at the end of 2015. During this time Dennis and Joan had 5 children.
Dennis always had a strong work ethic and a love for the community but being in business for himself really drove his passions. He proudly served the City of Albany for 27 years; serving on the Albany City Council from 1985 to 2007, Mayor of Albany from 2007 to 2012, and Park Board and Economic Development Authority (EDA) liaison during that time. Dennis was also honored to serve on the Albany Mutual Telephone Association board from 2011-2016.
Dennis enjoyed golf, hunting, and frequenting local businesses. He looked forward to US Bank Stadium Vikings games and his yearly visit to Palm Springs with his friend Paul. Dennis was known for his generosity, his frank advice, his honesty, his tireless commitment to his businesses, and ensuring his children grew up to be dependable and hard-working.
Dennis was a member of the Knights of Columbus, Catholic United Financial and the Seven Dolors Catholic Church.
He will be missed by his wife Joan; his children, Janelle Sand of Albany, Laura (Blake) Cheeley of Ramsey, Tracy (Scott) Schneider of Albany, and Robert Sand of Albany; his grandchildren, Mia, Hadley, Harper & Tyler Cheeley and Parker and Lydia Schneider; his siblings, Jim (Jean) Sand of Avon, Judy (Eldred) Dingmann of Monticello, Dale (Mary) Sand of Cold Spring, Leo Sand of Avon, Tom (Ginger) Sand of Rochester, Brian (Sherri) Sand of Albany; his sister-in-law, Karen Weber-Sand of St. Joseph; his goddaughter, Angela Teske of Albany; his many nieces & nephews and great-nieces & nephews.
He is preceded in death by his mother and father Ervin and Betty Sand, his son Joey, his sisters Joyce Winter, Diane Sand, Mary Lou Sand, Mary Kay Sand, and his brother-in-law Bert Winter.
Memorials are preferred in lieu of flowers. Memorials will be donated to Holy Family School, Seven Dolors Endowment Fund and the Alzheimer’s Society.