Born in Palatka, FL,

on Feb. 1, 1934

Departed Oct. 11, 2013

Martha Earline "Sistie"

Waits Childers

Our beloved Mama "Sistie" Martha Earline Waits Childers, age 79, died on October 11, 2013, at The Suites of Woodleaf in Thomasville, GA, where she had lived for most of the past five years. She was born February 1, 1934, in Palatka, FL, to Thomas Earl Waits and Edith Evelyn Miller (Waits) Beardsley. A former "Miss Palatka," she was a 1952 graduate of Mellon High School and attended Riverside School of Nursing in Jacksonville, FL, prior to her 1954 marriage to Donald R. Cobb. Their union produced five children: Donald Richard Cobb, Jr. (Sheri) of Ormond Beach, Julia Diane Costas (Greg) of Tallahassee, Edith Lenore "Lee" Atkinson (Mickey) of Thomasville, Joseph Lawrence Cobb (Jason Stanford) of Crescent Beach, and Martha Suzanne Riefstahl (Bob) of Colorado Springs. Her 1986 marriage to Norman F. Childers of Gainesville, FL, further added to her family: Mark Allan Childers (Betty Lou), Nancy Lynn Chapman (deceased), Dennis Childers (Cheryl), and Monica Whitton (Tom). She had six treasured grandchildren: Donald Franklin Cobb (Wendy), Lauren Leigh Atkinson (fiance Brock Bonner), Alyssa Nicole Costas, Samantha Diane Costas, Trent Gordon Riefstahl, and Bennett Robert Riefstahl. She also was blessed with two great-grandchildren: Tyler Aaron Cobb and Trace Patrick Cobb. Sisters Joanne Tuten (Palatka) and Penny Bellas (St. Augustine) also survive her, while Tommie Lou Butler predeceased her. Many dear cousins, nieces, and nephews mourn her passing as well.

A memorial service honoring her life will be held at First United Methodist Church, 425 North Broad Street, Thomasville, GA, on Tuesday, October 15, 2013, at 11:00 a.m. The family will receive friends the hour before the service.

Her love of growing and arranging flowers, spending time at Crescent Beach, and sewing

elaborately embellished Christmas stockings for every member of the family (as well as grand-dogs and grand-cats),

was especially endearing.

Her final act of generosity was to donate her remains to the Anatomical Board for the State of Florida located at the University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville.

Memorial tributes may be made to Hospice of Southwest Georgia, 114 Mimosa Drive, Thomasville, GA 31792.

The family also wants to convey its deepest appreciation to the staff of The Suites of Woodleaf for the loving care provided to our mother. Visitors may sign the online guest register at



Published in Gainesville Sun from Oct. 13 to Oct. 14, 2013