Lester Sandquist
Interview by Amanda Alford

Lester Sandquist

The person I admire most is my 95 year old Grandpa, Lester. To be honest, he really isn’t my grandpa at all, but an honorary grandpa. When my sister and I were adopted in 2004, my grandparents on both sides of the family had passed away. Lester’s wife, Maxine, and my grandmother were very close. That is why they consider themselves honorary grandparents.

Lester Sandquist was born on February 22, 1922, in Oakland, Nebraska. He was born to Albert and Anna Sandquist. Lester was one of four children. Two things he remembers most about growing up are, “We had to behave” and “Dad taught me what ‘no’ meant.”

He went to school in Oakland where he graduated in 1939. He really enjoyed school and one of his best school memories is about his school superintendent. He remembers him going around to all of his teachers telling them that his problem wasn’t that he couldn’t learn, it was that he couldn’t hear what the teachers were saying. “I will always have a place in my heart for my superintendent,” said Lester.

It was after he graduated that his family moved to a farm outside of Lyons. In his free time, he really enjoyed bowling, playing the piano, doing puzzles and dancing. Today, he has become fond of scroll saw work. To this day, he still enjoys dancing, reading, and going to the senior center for the good food and camaraderie. Watching the Wheel of Fortune is also at the top of his list.

Lester’s wife, Maxine, passed away less than a year after they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. The first part of their married life they did a lot of traveling, testing dairy cattle.

Lester drove a truck for Hillside Dairy, delivering milk to the schools in the area. He also farmed and worked at the creamery in Lyons. They lived on their farm west of Lyons for several years before moving into town.

The most important thing to Lester is his family. I feel so lucky to be included in his family. Lester has three children, two daughters and a son who is now deceased. His son never married, but both daughters did, giving him four grandchildren and several great grandchildren.

Lester will do just about anything for his family. His wife Maxine was completing her degree and was having trouble in one class in particular. Lester helped her by staying up all night to type the paper she needed. When she came home that day, Lester said, “She was jumping up and down, saying she passed, she passed.”

He is very proud of his family. You can see it in his face and hear it in his voice when he talks about them. Lester Sandquist is an honest, and loving man. He and his wife have instilled in their children good values and work ethics. With his strong belief in God, family, and country, I feel truly blessed to be able to call him grandpa.

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