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April 03, 2024 - 00:00
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Debra Janik Sandell, loving mother and grandmother, peacefully passed away on March 27, 2024 at Baylor St. Lukes Hospital in Houston, Texas after a short, but courageous battle with leukemia.

She was born on Dec. 1, 1954 to Allen Earl and Frances (Henske) Garling. Growing up in Bellville, Texas, Debra was raised in the Christian faith. She was baptized on Jan. 16, 1955 at St. James Lutheran Church in New Wehdem, and was confirmed on March 30, 1969 at St. John Lutheran church in Bellville.

She was a member of St. Paul Lutheran Church in Columbus since 1973. She attended Sunday school classes throughout her life as a student as well as a teacher, and for a time, also played piano for Sunday school. She was a proud member of the Bellville Brahma Band and enjoyed raising 4H projects for the Austin County Fair.

In 1973, she married the late Irvin Janik. With the opportunity of employment, they moved to Columbus, Texas later that year. As a housewife, Debra raised her three children in the same Christian faith that she had, always putting her family first, many times, sacrificing her own needs. Her enjoyment of raising 4-H projects in her youth led to her raising New Zealand and Californian show rabbits in the 1980’s. She also served as Rabbit Show Chairperson for several years for the Colorado County Fair.

Always strong and determined, Debra eventually struck out on her own in life. She went to work for HEB Grocery in 1990 and retired in 2018. Throughout her career with HEB she worked as a cashier, bookkeeper, general merchandise lead, and eventually as the scan coordinator, which was her favorite position with the company. She also made many close friends and acquaintances with fellow employees as well as customers. After several months of retirement, Debra just couldn’t “sit still”. She went to work part time for several years for Kay Klauber Candies. Once again, she quickly made friends with her coworkers and had a special place in her heart for the entire Klauber family.

After “fully retiring” Debra enjoyed tending to her plants and yard, seeing her grandchildren, and spending time with her “besties” Karen, Maxine, and Darlene. Debra was a simple woman. She was raised simple, and she lived simply. She never desired to be in the limelight or to have anything that she didn’t need. She humbly lived her life the best that she could according to God and loved the ones that she cared for. She is going to be deeply missed by all that knew her.

Debra was preceded in death by her parents Allen Earl and Frances (Henske) Garling. She is survived by her sons James Janik and wife Shelley of Bernardo, David Janik and wife Jill of El Campo; daughter Amanda Justus and husband Heath of Aransas Pass; grandchildren Hayley and Zachary Janik, Kayla and Coltyn Janik, and Nathan Garamillo. She is also survived by brother and sisterin- law Royce and Elana Garling, and nephew Weston Garling all of Bellville, and her first true friends, all of her cousins.

Visitation was Tuesday, April 2, 2024 from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. at St Paul Lutheran Church in Columbus. Funeral service followed at 10 a.m. with Pastor Alan Kethan officiating. Following a reception for family and friends at the St Paul Lutheran Church Lighthouse, a private family burial service was held in Bellville Texas.

Pallbearers were James Janik, David Janik, Zachary Janik, Coltyn Janik, Nathan Garamillo, and Heath Justus. Honorary pallbearers were Royce Garling, Weston Garling, and all cousins.

Memorials may be given to St. Paul Lutheran Church, P.O. Box 267, Columbus, TX 78934.

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