Former Juneau resident Ivan A. Sanders died March 12, 2007, in Phoenix, where he was visiting family. He was 71.
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He was born on Sept. 30, 1935, to Joseph L. and Elise G. Sanders, in Armour, S.D. He grew up and attended schools in the farming community of Delmont, S.D. Music was always a part of his life; he started playing the guitar at 10 years old. He played cornet in his high school band. After attending Dakota Wesleyan University for one year, he joined the Air Force, serving at various bases in the U.S. and Guam.
His family says that although he accepted Christ as his savior in his teen years at church camp, it was in Guam, as a young man, that he rededicated his life to Christ. While still in the service he played rhythm and steel guitars in local bands. His family recalls that he liked, and was well versed in, many types of country western music.
On June 24, 1961, he married Rosemary Stevens in Elizabethtown, N.Y. Shortly thereafter, they moved to Juneau, where they lived for 30 years. After he retired from the U.S. Postal Service in 1993, they moved to Grants Pass, Ore. His wife recalls that they enjoyed many great rides on their motorcycle, including several cross country trips; but they were always glad to return home to "their valley."
His family remembers him as a man that loved God and his family, and was known for his wonderful sense of humor, ready smile, singing gospel music, and encouraging others.
He was preceded in death by his father, Joseph; sister, JoAnne; daughter, Donna; and son, Steven.
He is survived by his wife, Rosemary; family members, Liz Chamberland; Janice Yatchmanoff and Johnnie Bookout; Monika Sanders; Roseann and Carl J. Faust; Yvonne and Ruben Garcin; Zenita Haugen; numerous grandchildren; four greatgrandchildren; mother, Elsie G. Sanders; and brother, Glen Sanders.
Cremation arrangements were handled by Best Funeral Services in Phoenix. A memorial celebration is being held at River Valley Community Church, 405 N.E. 6th St., Grants Pass, Ore., on April 1, at 4 p.m. Committal will be held at Sparlin Cemetery in Williams, Ore.
Memorial contributions can be sent in Ivan's name to Gospel Rescue Mission, P.O. Box 190, Grants Pass, Ore., 97528.
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