Velma Jean Zeller Sanders, 81, of Stillwater passed away on Aug. 24, 2013. She was born on Nov. 29, 1931, in Keats, Kan., to Kenneth and Lois Zeller. On March 26, 1950, Velma was united in marriage to Harold Thomas “Tom” Sanders in Onega, Kan. They have five children together.
Velma worked in sales and management for Avon from 1958 until 1977 before becoming co-owner of Countryside Studios where she pursued her love of art. She was a very accomplished artist who won many awards for her oil paintings. She served as president and officer for the Stillwater Art Guild and was a member of the Ponca City Art Guild. Velma took a very active role in her church community throughout her life. She was a member of The Order of the Daughters of the King and the Order of Saint Luke the Physician where she served as convener in Oklahoma. At St. Andrews Episcopal Church, Velma led the prayer and healing ministries, was a lay eucharistic minister and sang in the choir for many years. She was also the first female member of the Toast Masters Guild of Stillwater and a member of the Stillwater Mineral & Gem Society.
She is survived by her husband, Harold Thomas Sanders, of Stillwater; five children: Irene and spouse John Cook of Lulu, Fla., John and spouse Becky Sanders of Morrison, Kathleen Akin of Austin, Texas, Leland “Lee” and spouse Evelyn Sanders of Stillwater, and Teresa and spouse Tim Richmond; 12 grandchildren: Kari and spouse Kenneth Mayon, Stacy and spouse Bob Fuchs, Kimberly Bunger, Joshua Kopren, Leslie and spouse Scott Terrell, Shaun and spouse Tasha Sanders, Sarah and spouse Darren Grissom, Laura and spouse Joshua Whitfield, Kristie and spouse David Mendenhall, Heather Sanders, Stephanie and spouse GK Rossander, Michael and spouse Anne Sanders, and Chase Sanders; 15 great-grandchildren: Jacqueline, Maddison, Vincent, Brianna, Kyrin, Grace, Libby, Bailey, Aidan, Kent, Mary, Matthew, Grace, Zoie and Preston; two brothers: Frederick Earl Zeller and Melvin Zeller and their families; two sisters: Marjorie Thompson and Marilyn Brown and their families; and the family of Glenn Zeller.
She was preceded in death by her father, Kenneth Zeller; mother, Lois Zeller; brother, Glenn Zeller; son, Mark Sanders; and great-grandchild, Cameron.
Her funeral service will be held at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 31, 2013, at St. Andrews Epsicopal Church in Stillwater, with Rev. James Cook officiating. Strode Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. Condolences may be sent to the family and an obituary viewed by visiting strodefh.com.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to St. Andrews Episcopal Church in memory of Velma Sanders at 516 W. 3rd Ave, Stillwater, OK, 74074. The family would like to express their gratitude to Dr. John Williams, Dr. Arthur Hagan, Dr. Tom Smith, Cheryl Booten, Pearl Brown and Judith Karman Hospice for their faithful care.