PLACE OF HONOR
Gold Star family receives a new home in honor
of their son who died while serving in the Navy
Kathi and Gene Sandburg stood back and looked at
their new 2,435-square-foot home neatly sitting on
their new lot and were overcome with emotion.
Their son, Brendon, they were sure, was looking
down on them with a big smile on his face.
“We’re so grateful,” Gene Sandburg said. “It’s overwhelming
that Port St. Lucie and GL Homes gave us this
beautiful home. I think this is Brendon’s way of taking care
Brendon Sandburg was a petty officer and naval hospital
corpsman, who was assigned to Branch Medical Clinic in
Yuma, Arizona, when he died in a search and rescue helicopter
training exercise on Aug. 16, 2007. He was just 25.
The Sandburgs are now a Gold Star family — a designation
given to close family members of a person who died in
Brendon’s daughter, who was just 18 months old when he
died, lives in Tennessee.
“She has big blue eyes and a great smile,” Kathi Sandburg
said. “She’s a combination of the best of her mom and dad.”
The Sandburgs, both retired, have two other sons, Jeremy,
43, in Oregon, and Garrett, 37, who lives locally. The boys
grew up in Stuart. Brendon graduated in 2000 from John
Carroll High School in Fort Pierce. >>
30 Port St. Lucie Magazine
Kathy and Gene Sandburg were
given a ceremonial key to their
new home built by GL Homes
in honor of their son, Petty
Officer Brendon Sandburg.
BY SUSAN BURGESS
SEVIN BULLWINKLE PHOTOS