Mr. Frank “Sonny” Sanders, age 80, of Tullahoma, TN., passed away Thursday morning, May 29, 2014, at Life Care Center of Tullahoma. Born in 1933 in Franklin County, TN. he was the son of the late Frankie Sanders and Lillian Blackburn Sanders.
He was a faithful Christian church member of Gospel Tabernacle Baptist Church in Tullahoma, TN., where he served as a Sunday School teacher and Deacon for many years. He also attended Marble Plains Baptist Church in Winchester, TN., where he served as a Deacon for several years and also headed up many projects such as the construction of the Fellowship Hall. Mr. Sanders enjoyed fishing and hunting and over the course of his life killed 99 bucks.
In addition to his parents, he is preceded in death by his wife of many years, Dimple Sanders.
Mr. Sanders graduated from Tullahoma High School, attended Motlow State Community College, and majored in Business. He served on the Franklin County Planning Commission for 28 years, the Franklin County Zoning Commission for 23 years, the Franklin County School Committee for 8 years, Franklin County Recreation Committee for 4 years, Represented 7th District Franklin County Commissioner for 12 years, and Retired from Arnold Engineering Development Center after working there for 39 years. While working at AEDC he worked in Testing, Operations and Research. He was a machinist much of the time. He also worked with the Air Force and promoted and suggested the first deer to be released there, and suggested and promoted the first development of green tree areas at AEDC Management areas. He was a member of former Conservation Club at Arnold Engineering Development Center, while in Conservation Club, planted wild rice for waterfowl around Woods Reservoir, talked to TWRA and received the first release of the home goose flock in our area-1, raised and released a home flock of Mallard ducks on Woods Reservoir. During the 1970’s, contact was made with Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency and Tennessee Valley Authority on preserving Mingo Swamp as a Wetland Project for waterfowl, and as a result the Mingo Area is now purchased under the present Wetlands Project and preserved for future generations. Mr. Sanders promoted an effort in 1978 of preserving 50,000 acres under ownership of Carters in Franklin County as National Forrest, and this to this day is still undetermined. He was also the Area Coordinator for 2 years on development of Jack Nicklaus Golf Course at Tims Ford Council and with TVA on Environmental Impact Study, and accumulated endorsements and support. Mr. Sanders was Co-Founder and Promoter of the Center Grove Fire Hall, he worked with Tims Ford Council on Shoreline clean-up with TVA and lake issues, he was involved in the planting of Cypress Trees from TVA around Tims Ford Lake shoreline, promoted a government reform (Consolidation) for Franklin County, but it did not pass. He was a developer of real estate in Franklin County, such as Golf Shores Subdivision and homes on the shoreline of Tims Ford Lake.
He is survived by one son Kent (Kim) Sanders of Winchester,TN., one daughter Linda (Michael) Spano of Bartlett, TN., one brother Ted (Eloise) Sanders, two sisters Thelma Jean (Fred) McClure and Patsy (Jimmy) Soloman, all of Tullahoma, TN., grandchildren Jay (Nicollette) Sanders, Malina Charnow Armstrong, Nick (Sherry) Spano, great grandchildren Fiona Charnow, Evan Charnow, Lilly Charnow, Aidan Armstrong, Alexis, Courtney, Michael, Peyton, and Dominic Spano.
Visitation with the family will be Friday, June 6, 2014 from 10AM until 1PM in the Chapel of Tullahoma Funeral Home.
Funeral Services for Mr. Sanders will be Friday, June 6, 2014, at 2PM in the Chapel of Tullahoma Funeral Home with Brother Hiram LeMay and Brother Rodney Shraeder officiating.