Sandra Kirk Pickering LaFon


Sandra Kirk Pickering LaFon was born on September 28, 1939, to Claire and Helen (Epperson) Kirk in Carthage, Missouri. Her life centered around family, and she was surrounded by her family when she left this world for her heavenly home on Tuesday, February 27, 2024. Whether being at her mother’s side during her cancer battle, caring for her father at the end of his life, or being there for her husband Lyle in his battle with MD, family was important to her. She was fully invested in her children and the children of the community through leading a Girl Scout Troop (and ending up with a room full of Girl Schout Cookies to sell), being a Cub Scout Den Leader (and organizing the Pinewood Derby), leading the Parent Teacher Organization at her children’s elementary school, and being the Head Room Mo9om for all of the class parties, she was heavily involved. She encouraged extracurricular activities like band, football, baseball, and golf. Not only did she encourage extracurriculars for her children, but she was also a 50+ year member of the Eminence Chapter of Order of the Eastern Star, while also supporting the International Rainbow for Girls and Grand Cross of Color.

She was always a curious, smart, problem-solving woman. Sandra was an adamant reader, not only reading for pleasure, but also reading books to learn how to accomplish her goals- like learning to decorate cakes, remodeling her kitchen, or building a step at the back of her house. She kept a map by her chair to locate the places mentioned in the news. She also enjoyed crafts and music. As she met Lyle, the outdoors became an interest, learning to hunt and even becoming an archery competitor!

She persevered through several losses in her life, not to mention overcoming her own breast cancer. She stoically mourned the loss of her parents, her first baby, Debra, and her two husbands, Glenn D. Pickering and Lyle LaFon.


She is survived by her sister and brother-in-law, Vicki and Art Prewtt, Rogers, Arkansas. She also leaves her children: Karen and Bob Foster of Bentonville, Arkansas; David and Dawn Pickering of Seneca, Missouri; Kevin and Molly Pickering of Rogers, Arkansas; Scott and Wendy Pickering of Lewisville, Texas; and Wes and Anna LaFon of Lonoke, Arkansas. She was very proud of her grandchildren, Sarah Foster of Orlando, Florida; Ali and Clayton Strong of Neosho, Missouri; Melanie and Colton Cheap of Edmond, Oklahoma; Glenn Hoboken of New Jersey; Mitchell Pickering of Bella Vista, Arkansas; Abby Foster of Bentonville, Arkansas; and Kaleb LaFon of Lonoke, Arkansas. She enjoyed seeing the pictures and hearing the antics of her soon-to-be 10 great-grandchildren! Family was important to Sandra, and her family will miss her dearly.

There will be a graveside service for Sandra at 3:00 PM on Monday, March 4, 2024, at Park Cemetery in Carthage, Missouri. A visitation will be held from 1:00 to 2:30 PM on Monday, March 4, 2024, before the graveside service at the Presbyterian Church in Carthage.

Condolences may be made online at

Any contributions can be made to the Carthage Humane Society or the Boys and Girls Club of Southwest Missouri.

Arrangements are under the care and direction of Ulmer Funeral Home.