DOWNEY – Laura A. Brandenburg, born in Galesburg, Ill., on Sept. 19, 1951 to Eugene and Patricia Mathers, passed away May 9. She grew up on a small farm near the town of North Henderson, Ill. Laura was the middle child of the Mathers family with her brother David one year older and her sister Elizabeth six years younger. Laura was active with 4-H (Prize Barrow), high school plays (lead in the spring musical) and helping around the house and farm as needed.
Laura was accepted into the University of Illinois at the Champagne/Urbana campus as a Business Major where she, at the age of 19, met her future husband, Jay Brandenburg. She graduated with a BS degree in Business in 1973.
Laura came out for a visit to Los Angeles with her girlfriend and former roommate, Cheryl, but once in Southern California she decided to stay. She started as a waitress at Bob’s Big Boy for a stint before she obtained her real estate license.
Jay and Laura were married in the Methodist Church at North Henderson on Dec. 27, 1975. They settled in Downey, near where Jay worked at Rockwell International as an engineer on the Space Shuttle. It was also centrally located and close to Southwestern Law School for Jay’s night classes.
As a real estate agent, Laura found the perfect starter home in Cerritos in 1976 about the time Jay made a career move to Northrop Corporation. They moved into another Cerritos home in 1987.
After many years of marriage, Jay and Laura had their daughter, Sara Elise Brandenburg, who was born on May 3, 1988. The family finally settled in Carlsbad in 2000 after Jay was transferred to the San Diego area.
Laura is survived by her mother, Patricia Mathers; brother, David Mathers; sister, Elizabeth Timmons; husband, Jay Brandenburg; daughter, Sara Brandenburg; and many nieces and nephews.
Published: May 21, 2015 - Volume 14 - Issue 06