Huntington, New York
Contributions on Sandy’s behalf can be made to Central Vermont Home Health and Hospice or The McClure Miller Respite House. A celebration of Sandy’s life will be held in early summer.
Montpelier – Henry Andrews Ingraham, known throughout his life as “Sandy,” died in Colchester, Vermont on March 11, 2023.
Sandy was born in 1947 to Henry Gardiner Ingraham and Barbara Lamb Ingraham.
She spent her childhood playing outside with her sister and three brothers, and her many cousins and friends, in the fields and woods surrounding her home in Northport, on the north shore of Long Island. Sandy loved to ride steeplechase for track, play ice hockey on the frozen Northport ponds, and ride bareback on her pony Red.
After high school, he earned a BA in History from Denison University and then an MA in English from the University of Chicago, making many lasting friends along the way. She taught for a year at an elementary school in inner-city Chicago, then toured Europe on a Triumph motorcycle and worked on a sheep farm in Scotland before traveling to Vermont.
Since Sandy was a little boy, he loved caring for animals. Despite his excellent education and great interest in history and literature, he was drawn to agriculture. In the early 1980s, he lived in Alburgh, where he worked on a small dairy farm for room and board and taught in a two-room school. After two years, he decided that he needed a better way to earn a living and traveled to McGill University in Montreal, where he received a Master’s in Business. He accepted a teaching job at Lyndon State College in 1983 and moved to the Northeast Kingdom.
In 1985 he met Amy Ehrlich, newly arrived from Brooklyn with her 11-year-old son Joss. After a whirlwind courtship, Sandy and Amy married in June and bought a farmhouse on a hill in Barnet. Sandy raised Holstein heifers, doing chores twice a day while working at Lyndon State. Every morning in the summer, she would plunge into the farm pond, then work outside until dark, cutting hay, mending fences, and moving cows from one pasture to another.
with a host of beloved dogs. There were laying hens and always horses: two Percherons, a retired racehorse, and a dozen wild western mustangs.
The farm was open to all. Friends and their children, nieces and nephews, and grandchildren from California rode with Sandy on their tractors, played on the basketball court she created in the barn with hay bales for bleachers, and took to the water from a zip line over the pond. There were garden parties with impromptu bands, huge Thanksgiving dinners, and even a wedding.
Sandy also found time to pursue her deep interest in improving the quality of life for animals. When he read about the Aqua Cow Rise system, a water tank invented by a Danish farmer to float downed cows, lifting them up without clamps or chains, he took it upon himself to manufacture and distribute them in the United States. Within just a few years, almost every veterinary school in the country was using the Aqua Cow system.
This all ended in 2013 when Sandy fell ill with what was diagnosed as severe depression. She bravely endured it, but was unable to manage the farm. It was placed in the Vermont Land Trust in 2017, the property and equipment were sold, and Amy and Sandy moved to Montpelier. No medication helped, but it wasn’t until November 2022 that Sandy was correctly diagnosed with Lewy body dementia, for which there is no treatment or cure.
Amy cared for him at home with the help of family and friends, caregivers, and hospice nurses. On March 7, Sandy checked into Respite House in Colchester. She lived four more days, finally at peace, with Amy by her side day and night.
In addition to Amy, Sandy is survived by her stepson Joss Williams (Jennie) and three grandsons, Aaron, Noah and Gabriel. She also leaves behind her brothers Mike (Sally), Steve (Sheila), Rob (June) and Polly (Rob Hirschfeld), and many cousins, nieces, nephews and friends.
Sandy was a funny, kind, and generous man, a committed steward of the land and caretaker of the creatures, and a particularly keen observer of life’s tragedy and comedy. Beyond any earthly achievement, his legacy is in the respect and love he earned every day, simply by being himself.