Saralee A. (Smith) Sheehan, 48, of Coto de Caza, CA passed away at home on Friday June 19, 2015. Preceded in death by her loving father, Howard Lee Smith, a U.S. Army Major and decorated Korean War veteran, Saralee is survived by her husband of 24 years, Patrick; her beloved daughters Shannon Maria and Megan Isabel Sheehan; her loving mother Augustina Martinez Smith of El Paso, TX and her loyal brother Howard E. Smith of El Paso, TX.
Saralee was born during her father’s deployment at Heidelberg, Germany Army Base on July 26, 1966. She graduated from St. Agnes Academy (Catholic High School) in Houston, TX in 1984. She went on to earn a Bachelor’s of Science degree in International Business from Baylor University, Waco, TX in 1988 and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza Graduate School of Business, South Bend, IN in 1990. While attending graduate business school classes in 1989 at Notre Dame she met her future husband Patrick.
After graduation from Notre Dame she joined General Motors as an automotive industry economist and loyally served GM for eight years in Detroit, MI and Arlington, TX. Soon after the birth of her first daughter Shannon she retired from GM to undertake full-time the vocation she excelled at more than any other – serving as loving mother and best friend to her two beautiful daughters.
Saralee’s favorite passion was serving as a parent-volunteer at Serra Catholic Elementary School in Rancho Santa Margarita, CA.
Loved by so many friends and family, Saralee will most be remembered for her constant and never waning positive outlook and compassionate disposition in the face of adversity, always finding the best in every situation and always smiling. One close friend once said of Saralee that “she never knew what a thunderstorm was because she loved to dance in the rain.”
A memorial funeral service in her honor will be held on Tuesday June 23, 2015 at 2pm at St. Kilian Roman Catholic Church, 26872 Estanciero Drive, Mission Viejo, CA.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in Saralee’s honor can be made to Serra Catholic School, 23652 Antonio Parkway, Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, 92688.