Virginia Cooke Smith Saunders

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Obituary

Sumter, SC …… Virginia Cooke Smith Saunders, age 71, wife of Lt. Col. William Saunders, USA, RTD, passed away on Monday, September 17, 2018 with her husband by her side.

She was born in 1947 in Attleboro, Massachusetts, the daughter of the late Charles D.J. and Mrs. Virginia (Cooke) Smith. She grew up in Attleboro, MA. attending school and graduating from Attleboro High School in 1965. She attended Vermont College in Montpelier, Vermont and received an Associate Degree in Early Childhood Education in 1967. Following her marriage, she and her husband traveled the United States with his military postings. They settled in Rehoboth in 1973 where she took her love of children to the Rehoboth School system after having became a Stevenson Reading instructor and later a certified Wilson instructor. In July of 2016 she and Bill relocated to Sumter, SC full time.

As a child she summered on Martha’s Vineyard at her families’ home in Oak Bluffs, MA. Her love of the island and the multiple generations it reflected, were instilled in her children.
After twenty-four years of education, she retired to spend time with her grandchildren. She cherished the winters she spent in South Carolina with her daughter and enjoyed the trips to Texas to visit her” gang”. Her passions in retirement became embroidery and genealogy. Her hobby guaranteed personalized clothes for everyone. Her dedication to the family histories gave her enormous satisfaction that her children and grandchildren would know of their ancestors. She traced her heritage back through the Civil War, American Revolution, early settlers in the colonies and for Western Europe. She was an active member in the Daughters of The American Revolution in chapters in both Attleboro, MA and Sumter, SC.
Besides her husband of 50 years, she is survived by her daughter, Kathleen J. Lee and her husband MSG Robert N. Lee, Jr., USAF-RTD of Sumter, her son, Brendan J. Saunders and his wife Tracy of Cypress, TX; two brothers, James Smith of Colorado and Leland Smith of New York and four grandchildren, Kayla, Nicholas and Joseph Saunders of Cypress, TX and Edward Lee of Sumter.

A funeral service will be held on Tuesday, September 25, 2018 at 11:00 am in the Bullock Funeral Home Chapel. Interment will follow in the Ft. Jackson National Cemetery at 1:00 pm.

The family will receive friends on Monday, September 24, 2018 from 6:00-8:00 pm at Bullock Funeral Home.