Sandra Lea Stringer
33 Years Old

June 5, 1950 to July 16, 1983

Sandy Stringer from Emporia, Kansas enjoyed interaction with her three children, parents, brothers, cousins, aunts and uncles. This included mischievous practical joked on friends and family members, especially if the individual’s ego had become obnoxious.

Sandy was a perpetual student and teacher, interested in the practical applications of Mathematics, exciting others with her knowledge and enthusiasm.

Having obtained a Master Degree, Sandy was studying for a Doctorate in Mathematics and Computer Science.

Sandy worked diligently coordinating activities in the Lutheran Church, despite a heavy schedule as a student and teacher.

Housework and cooking were not an immediate daily concern to Sandy as she concentrated on raising the family, volunteering at church and accomplishing her academic goals. When Sandy promised a task, it was completed.

Sandy loved all aspects of her life, children, husband, family and friends.

Bubbly, outgoing, eyes aglow, infectious smile and laugh, a peck on the cheek or an embrace…..this was Sandy…..


On July 16th, 1983, Sandy Stringer (Bird), 33, from Emporia, Kansas was murdered by her husband Tom Bird, a Lutheran minister.

Tom was having an affair with his church Secretary Lorna Anderson.

Tom attempted to mask the murder as a single-car accident. The car went off the narrow road, over an embankment and into a river on the outskirts of Emporia.

Sandy was found face-down in the river.

Since Sandy’s family lived in Little Rock, Arkansas, they believed the accident story. Tom insisted the State was liable that poor road signs were at fault for the accident and he planned a liability lawsuit.

In late December 1983, Sandy’s family learned that Loran Anderson’s husband had been murdered in October 1983.

Having been aware that Sandy suspected Tom’s relationship with Lorna, Sandy’s family began investigating her death. They discovered the Emporia Police, Kansas State Police and KBI had been investigating her death. Their facts determined she had been attacked on the river bridge and thrown from the bridge.

Tom Bird was convicted in July 1984 of Conspiracy to Commit Murder and Sandy’s murder in July 1985.

Bird was sentenced to 15 years in prison for the Conspiracy conviction and 25 years to Life for the Murder Conviction.

As of September 1997, Tom Bird remained in prison.

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Sandra Stringer