Kay E. Sanabria, 62, passed away on March 22, 2022, with her family by her side at Toms River Community Medical Center.
She was born in Manhattan, NY, and grew up in Hazlet, NJ before moving to Jackson, NJ in 2000. Kay was also a long-time Wawa employee and somewhat of a town celebrity. Everyone would go in to grab a coffee but would leave with a smile because of Kay. She never realized how deep her impact was, but when she had to stop working a few months ago, everyone expressed an outpouring of love because of how much they missed her in their daily routine.
She is predeceased by her parents, Arthur and Karla Stewart, her brothers, Roderic “Scottie” Stewart and Arthur Stewart, her sister, Marion Santos, her husband, Samuel Santiago, and her son, Scott Santiago. She is survived by her loving children, Samuel Jr., David, Angelique, Jonathan, Dominic, Kaylyn Santiago, and Chris Malone. Brother Ray Stewart. Grandchildren Samuel, David, Alex, Alana, Kasey, Brayden, Gabriel, Lucy, Mackenzie, Patrick, Carter Santiago, Bryanna Murphy, and Christopher, Thomas, Elizabeth, and Adrian Malone. Nephew Robert Santos.
She loved being outdoors and camping with her brother Ray at Skinner’s Falls and has carried that tradition on with her kids and her husband Sam for years. She loved gardening, dancing, taking her kids to the beach, amusement parks, and the English Town Auction. Kay always had a knack for shopping. She could scope out a deal like no other. Her family called her Mary Poppins because whatever anyone needed, she always had it, or would find it. She was such a selfless soul so, often, her shopping usually benefited the people around her. She loved collecting dolphins and was enamored with their beauty. It is fitting to think about that now because dolphins are a symbol of protection and now, she will be our protector from up above.
In 2000 she moved to Jackson with the love of her life, Samuel Santiago. They were hard-working people who found joy in the little things in life, like dancing. They met at a club and could not resist the 80’s jams or each other. The two of them built an amazing life together, sharing 8 children and countless laughs. They had a house built in Jackson and that house quickly turned into a home. It was a place everyone would gather whether you were family or not, you were always invited to the dinner table. She loved cooking and baking, she hosted every holiday and was revered for her staple dishes. If you did not have a place to go, you were always welcomed in her home. She was the mom that all her kids' friends went to, for whatever they needed.
Kay was born to be a life changer and a caretaker. Whether she was taking care of the kids or gardening, she had a knack for helping things thrive... It seemed like the love she exuded aided in growth. She loved people for who they were, flaws and all. She was always there for everyone, never an excuse, just results.
She built a beautiful legacy that is most evident through her children. After years of being a full-time Mom and seemingly perfecting it, Kay found new inspiration in her grandchildren. She tried to be there for every one of their events and achievements. In total, she had 16 grandchildren, with one on the way. Their ages range from two to twenty-three years old and each one of them held a special place in her heart.
She was so proud of her family and in the end, she fought so hard for them, which made her family so proud of her. Somehow, she managed to do it with grace and a smile on her face.
She was the best to ever do it and there is so much to miss about her. There are no words that capture the burden of loss Kay’s death leaves in this world, but she lived every moment right up until her last. She was pulling pranks and dancing even when things were tough and that is how she should be remembered. She has been an example to so many and a true gift in all the lives she has touched. Now it is time for her to rest alongside her husband Sam and her son Scotty.
All are welcome to celebrate the life of Kay this weekend. Visitation will be held at Ryan's Funeral Home; Debow Chapel this Sunday March 27 from 1-5.