Doreen Sansom Profile Photo

Doreen Sansom

d. May 25, 2024

Santa Fe

Doreen Sansom, 78, passed away Saturday, May 25, 2024, at her home in Santa Fe, surrounded by her loving family, after a short battle with late-stage pancreatic cancer.

The fourth of six children, Doreen was born February 25,1946 in Pittston, PA to father Joseph Angelella and mother Esther (Catell) Angelella.

Her early adulthood was dedicated to learning and teaching languages (French and Spanish), both domestically and abroad, before landing in Santa Fe and embarking on her career as a social worker. From 1979-1992 Doreen worked for Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Santa Fe, as Supervisor of Adult Volunteer matches with children and eventually as Program Coordinator. A note to all of her Bigs and Littles - she remembered you all and held you close to her heart - and she loved it when you stopped her in the grocery store to say hello.

In the '90s and early '00s Doreen worked as Home Visiting Coordinator for the New Mexico Department of Public Health, Family Health Bureau. She was a Health Educator for home visiting and early childhood and family support programs. She finished her professional career as the Personnel Development Coordinator for the Family Infant Toddler Program (FIT), New Mexico Department of Health, Developmental Disabilities Supports Division, which provides early intervention for families with infants and toddlers with and at risk for developmental delays and disabilities statewide. Through her direct work with people, as well as the training she provided to other social workers, she has made a profound and positive impact on the lives of countless New Mexicans.

Doreen was also an active and devoted volunteer, particularly over the past 14 years in her work as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) for foster children who have been removed from their families as result of abuse & neglect. She was a protective, dedicated, and consistently reliable resource for so many kids as well as other CASA volunteers.

Friends and family will remember Doreen as one of the kindest, gentlest, most giving, and most loving people they have ever had the joy of knowing. In her presence one felt seen, heard, and held.

She was a spectacular cook, took great pleasure in books and self-betterment, and loved to go dancing with her husband Tom. Their love was so evident and effortless on the dance floor.

The only thing that could top her dedication to her work was her devotion to her family. She was an incredible wife, mother, mother-in-law, and the best Nana ever. Her love, patience, support, and mindful intention with her husband, her children and grandchildren had no limit. Her only regret was not having more time with her grandkids.

She will forever be held on a high pedestal in our hearts and she will live on in the love and connection she quietly instilled in her family.

Doreen is survived by her loving husband of 46 years, Tom Sansom; son Jesse Sansom, his wife Breeze, and their son Dash; daughter Rachael Kraft, her husband Matt, and their daughter Chloe; sisters Mary Dicton and Jean Mariotti; and brothers Joseph Angelella, Francis Angelella, and David Angelella.

Memorial details to follow at

If you would like to honor Doreen, please consider making a donation to her most dedicated cause: CASA - Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children, First District

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Doreen Sansom, please visit our flower store.


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