Sara Alicia Brittingham

March 26, 1928 - May 21, 2018
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After faithfully walking with the Lord on this earth, Sara Alicia Longoria de Brittingham, ninety years young, joined Him in Heaven on Monday, May 21. She will be remembered for living the words of her favorite passage from the Bible, Psalm 37:4, “Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.”

Born March 26, 1928, in Laredo, Texas to parents Alice Penn and Octaviano “Chito” Longoria, Sara Alicia was the eldest of three children. Regarded as a great beauty; her loving, generous, and Christian spirit is her legacy.

As a teenager, while studying at Fairfax Hall in Waynesboro, Virginia, Sara spotted a young man with hazel eyes speaking Spanish at a diner, who she recounted was more handsome than a movie star. She later married that man, Edward “Tad” Brittingham, on June 6, 1953. They were true to their vows, relishing the high moments and serving as pillars to one another in times of sickness and need. Sara adored Tad. He patiently and devotedly shepherded her to safety and consoled her during moments of pain. Over nearly sixty-five years of marriage, they prevailed over trials and triumphs, proving love could grow beautifully like the bold red roses she planted in her backyard.

Together, they traveled the world from Africa to Asia, while raising six children in Nuevo Laredo. With the arrival of Sara’s first grandchild she was affectionately renamed “Ma Isa,” and the moniker stuck.

Her devotion to family was profound. As a mother, she hosted memorable Sunday lunches after church during which her six children developed strong bonds with extended family, neighbors, and friends. Fond memories, laughter, and love were played out in multi-generational tennis, swimming, volleyball, and card games at her home in Nuevo Laredo. She modeled prioritizing family as a grandmother by hosting reunions at least three times a year, phoning her relatives on a weekly basis, and never forgetting a birthday. Sara’s enthusiasm for travel and meaningful family memories coalesced on the trips she shared with her children and their spouses. As her family expanded with the marriages of her children and her grandchildren, she welcomed each new member into her aura of love and generosity, making every person feel like they were her “favorite.”

A zealous walker, Sara trekked many miles across the cobblestoned streets of foreign cities, dirt roads of Rancho Nuevo, sandy beaches of Port Aransas, and never missed her daily walk alongside “the wall” of Country Club Drive. A fan of celebrating others’ birthdays, she considered the day she embraced the Lord, July 7, 1975, her Christian birthday. Through her relationship with the Lord, she conquered cancer and reaped many more blessings.

She delighted in the Scriptures, and ministered His words to her family, friends, and those in need. Eventually, Sara was known for having a “direct line to God,” resulting in a prayer list that grew to hundreds of names. Each day she devoted hours to reading the Bible and praying for others. By the grace of the Lord, her prayers healed the sick, found spouses for bachelors, consoled the physically and emotionally wounded, and inspired the lost. Sometimes dubbed Barbara Walters, due to her fondness for engaging strangers in their life stories, Sara truly cared about everyone she encountered. The kindness she radiated left an indelible mark.

She was passionate about the needs of orphans and devoted time to ministering at the prison in Nuevo Laredo. During her time in Nuevo Laredo, she established and supported Casa Hogar Elim, was a president and staunch member of Las Damas Vicentinas, and later was instrumental in helping Pastor Ken Robeson raise the necessary funds to move and build The First Assembly of God Church to its current location on McPherson Ave. For years, she was a member of the church’s Board. Most recently, she was a member of Grace Bible Church in Laredo. With her Prayer Warrior group, she forged deep friendships and channeled the power of prayer for positive impact.

She reveled in the role of Ma Isa, grandmother. From playing hide-and-seek in the annexes of La Casa Grande, to arranging numerous trips, Ma Isa never skipped a graduation or Grandparents’ Day. Through relentless status update calls, prayers, and words of encouragement she inspired and celebrated the milestones in her grandchildren’s lives. She bestowed upon them her love for, among other things: chocolate, the San Antonio Spurs, shopping (and finding a good deal), Scrabble and Words With Friends, storytelling, and family gatherings.

To the following, her family extends gratitude for the steadfast support in her final months: the kind, gentle, and dedicated caregivers, Gracie Castillo, Sanjuana Solis Longoria, Marta Hernandez López, and Irma Vasquez; the attentive concerned care of Dr. Dennis Cantu; and, the responsive, committed nursing staff at Laredo Medical Center.

She passed away in peace, surrounded by her devoted husband Tad and six loving children: Edward Brittingham (Monica), Catherine Saxon (Steven), Thomas Brittingham (Christina), Gail Sanditen (Barry), Alice Werstak (Bruce), and Juan Brittingham. Her memory and spirit will live on through her grandchildren: Natalie Nihill Ruberto (James Ruberto), Eduardo “Barclay” Nihill (fiancé Marcella Medina); Thomas (Cristel), Andrew (Kimberly), and David Brittingham; Shelby, Britt, and Sarah Sanditen; Caroline, Nicole, and Camila Werstak; and Tad Brittingham; step-granddaughter Fernanda Marina; and great-grandchildren: Olivia and Claire Brittingham. She is also remembered by her siblings, Gloria Longoria de Padilla and Octaviano “Chito” Longoria, Jr., and the host of extended family and friends she touched with her grace.

A life well lived.

In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in Sara’s honor to:

Grace Bible Church of Laredo
online – or 5303 Alabama Ave., Laredo, TX 78041


The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Laredo Office
online –>sctx or 8610 North New Braunfels, Ste. 700, San Antonio, TX, 78217

Services will be held Thursday, May 24, 2018, at Fred Dickey Funeral & Cremation Services.  The family will receive friends and guests at 9:00 am.  Chapel service will officiate at 11:00 am.  Interment will follow in the Calvary Catholic Cemetery.

Funeral arrangements are by Fred Dickey Funeral & Cremation Services, 1320 Trey Dr, Laredo, TX 78041, (956)723-3611. You may leave condolences to the family online at

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Service Schedule

Visitation Information

Date: Thursday, May 24, 2018

Time: 9:00 am - 11:00 am

Fred Dickey Funeral & Cremation Services


1320 Trey Dr.
Laredo, Texas 78041

Cemetery Information

Date: Thursday, May 24, 2018

Calvary Catholic Cemetery


3600 McPherson Ave.
Laredo, Texas 78041


Life Event Timeline

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Timeline for Sara Alicia Brittingham

Born: March 26, 1928
Died: May 21, 2018

Condolences for Sara Alicia Brittingham

Fred Dickey Funeral & Cremation Services

Our sincere condolences.

The staff of Fred Dickey Funeral & Cremation Services.


Robert & Alicia Tatum posted on 5/30/18

Tad Our sincere condolences to you and your family in the passing of Sara Alicia. She was a wonderful person., and we will always remember her.


ISAIAS GARZA JR MD posted on 5/30/18

Mr. Brittingham my condolences to you and your family. It was a great honor for me and Barbara to have known and spent time with Mrs. Brittingham. May God bless you and your family in this sorrow times.


ISAIAS GARZA JR MD posted on 5/30/18

Mr Brittingham, I am so sorry to hear the passing of your wonderful wife and person. My condolences to you and your family. It was an honor to have known her and Barbara was also very happy to have spent time with her. God bless you and your family.


Gustavo Reyes posted on 5/25/18

Señor Tomas, mi más sentido pésame para usted y su familia, Dios les dé la sabiduría y la paz en sus corazones que en estos momentos necesitan. Reciba un afectuoso abrazo.


Susana Gonzalez Escobedo posted on 5/25/18

Our most heartfelt condolences for the entire Brittingham family. She left a very big mark on our lives through the devotion that my father, Chago, always had for her and Mr. Eduardo. She will always be remembered with love, may God receive her in his Holy Glory, and may she rest in peace.


Sergio Castillo posted on 5/24/18

Les mandó mis condolencias a toda la família. Un fuerte abrazó


Marcos Salinas ( Depto. Adminnistrativa LAREDO AUTOS, SA CV posted on 5/24/18

Elevamos nuestras oraciones al Señor, para que el alma de la Sra. Sara Alicia, descase en paz y le pedimos que la familia tenga una pronta resignación ante esta perdida. Los acompañamos en sus sentimientos.


Ricardo, Cordelia and Oscar Flores posted on 5/24/18

Our sincere condolences on your great loss. We will always remember Sara Alicia as a beautiful, gracious and kind lady whose vibrant faith in Our Lord, Jesus Christ was an inspiration to all who had the privilege of knowing her. She and your entire family are in our prayers at this time.


Alfredo G. Pellegrin III posted on 5/24/18

My condolences for you loss Alfredo G. Pellegrin III


Hilda Treviño posted on 5/24/18

Alice, Bruce, Caroline, Nicole, Camila, I send you my condolences for the death of your beloved Sara Alicia. She devoted her time and love, and full attention to her grandchildren. I remember her being fully present at every Grandparents' Day, End-of-Year Programs and all family activities at United Day School when I was a teacher there, and I do treasure those memories. I am very sorry for your loss, and I will send a donation to Grace Bible Church in her honor. You all are in my prayers and may God grant Sara Alicia eternal rest and peace. Love, Hilda Trevino Retired Teacher from United Day School


David & Veronica Puig posted on 5/24/18

Our prayers and thoughts go out to the families of Sara Brittingham, she was a first class person who always cared and prayed for others, she will be missed.


Armando Medina posted on 5/24/18

Dear Brittingham/Longoria family, On behalf of Lupita and myself, we would like to express our deepest and sincere condolences on the loss of your loved one, Sara Brittingham. Even though we never had the opportunity to meet her, we heard so many good things about her through her grandson, Barclay, who respected and adored her. We know that she will be greatly missed by all of you. Please know that we will be praying for all the family to receive the peace and comfort that they may need during this difficult time. May her soul rest in peace, Armando & Lupita Medina


Lula Morales posted on 5/23/18

To the Brittingham family: May you find hope in knowing that your cherished loving bonds are never broken. You were all lucky to have being blessed with such a loving and giving woman in your lives. May you find peace as you keep treasured memories of her alive. My beautiful Sara, may your light continue to shine bright over the sky for all of us.


Alan Robison posted on 5/23/18

My father, Ken Robison, counted Sara's life as an act of God. We know she is safe with God. We remember her as beautiful and kind.


María Rebeca Rugama posted on 5/23/18

Our most sincere condolences for the passing of such a beautiful lady. She will be on our prayers. And be always remembered for her kindness. Sincerely Rebeca Rugama and daughter Becky Casso.


Monica Alexander Gonzalez posted on 5/23/18

May your beautiful mother rest in peace. My thoughts and prayers are with all of you during this difficult time. Blessings, Monica Alexander Gonzalez


Diana R. Alexander posted on 5/23/18

Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time. God bless. Sincerely, Mr. and Mrs. Patrick H. (Diana) Alexander, Sr


William/Phillipa Weatherford posted on 5/23/18

A beautiful woman inside and out. God Bless,


Gaby posted on 5/23/18

Reciban nuestras condolencias. En Revelación o Apocalipsis 21:4 dice que “Dios limpiará toda lágrima de los ojos y la muerte no será más, ni existirá ya más lamento ni clamor ni dolor”. Y en Hechos 24:15 habla de “una Resurrección”. En un futuro sercsno nuestro amoroso creador limpiará la tierra eliminando todo tipo de maldad y de sufrimiento, ademas nos dice que tiene el deseo de devolverles la vida a nuestros seres queridos que hayan muerto.


Sarah Shelby Longoria Vazquez posted on 5/23/18

Siento mucho la perdida de mi prima, me gustaria esta con todos ustedes en estos momentos tan difíciles pero por cuestiónes medicas me encuentro fuera de la cuidad. Les mando a toda la familia y principalmente aTad un fuerte abrazo y mucha resignacion. Estaran en mis oraciones. Sarah Shelby y Jorge Vazquez


Raquel GG de Solis posted on 5/22/18

Mi mas sincero pesame para toda la familia Brittingham Longoria. Hermosos recuerdos. La mujer mas Hermosa que he conocido por fuera y dentro. Deja un gran legado y un ejemplo a seguir. DEP