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William B. Sanders

William B. Sanders William "Bill" Bertus Sanders, 91, of Chambersburg, passed away on Tuesday, May 13, 2014, at his home. He was the son of the late Paul Frederick Sanders and Helen Mae (Davis) Sanders of Chambersburg, and was born August 27, 1922, in Chambersburg. He is survived by his wife, Patricia M. (Lang) Sanders, whom he married in Greenville, Mich. August 9, 1952; and sister, (Mrs. Robert) Eleanor M. Thomas of Chambersburg; his children, Curtis D. Sanders and Brian K. Sanders (Beth), both of Harrisburg, Renard L. Sanders (Beverly) of St. Thomas, Anthony "Tony" C. Sanders (Mary) of Greencastle and Janine M. Wenger (Fred) of Chambersburg. He is also survived by eight grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a brother, Robert E. Sanders; and sisters, (Mrs. David T.) Edith J. Heck, (Mrs. Theodore) Dorothy L. Eberly and Elizabeth C. Sanders. He was a member of Our Lady of Visitation, Shippensburg. In 1938, at age 16, he was licensed to fly aircraft and was, according to the FAA, the youngest licensed pilot in Pennsylvania at that time. He flew his first solo airplane (a Piper Cub) before he learned to drive a car. He did his first skydive at age 19. He remained an avid student of flight throughout his life. He served in the U.S. Army, 1942-43, with the 86th Div., HQ Battery, 2nd Army, as a Staff Sergeant "grasshopper" aircraft pilot artillery spotter and later as an infantry soldier. He was medically discharged after a serious accident. In his early years, his profession was as a machinist and working at Fairchild Hiller in Hagerstown, Md. He retired in 1987 from Fairchild Space Technologies, Germantown, Md. as a Manufacturing Engineer after 45 years of service. He supplied research information on plastics and other applications to space rocket space pioneer, and his boss, Dr. Werner Von Braun for his articles for Popular Science magazine. He also was the production engineer for the Pegasus Satellite Project, numerous aircraft, and the ATS-F - an early communications satellite. (Yes, his children spent many a wonderful night looking into the sky at satellite "birds" moving across the sky.) He was a member of the oldest national community band, the St. Thomas Community Band, before its dissolution, and also the Mercersburg Community Band, both as trumpeter. He was an expert gardener and loved the gatherings of his family and engaging in humorous or intelligent conversation. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held Friday, May 16, 2014 at 11 a.m. in Our Lady of the Visitation Catholic Church, Shippensburg, with Father Paul J. Theisz as Celebrant. Burial will be in Norland Cemetery, Chambersburg, with Military Honors conducted by the Shippensburg Veterans Council. A viewing will be held one hour prior to the service in the church. Memorial contributions may be made to the Our Lady of the Visitation Catholic Church, 305 N. Prince St., Shippensburg, PA 17257. Online condolences may be expressed at fogelsanger-brickerfuneralhome.com

Funeral Home

Fogelsanger-Bricker Funeral Home, Inc.
112 West King Street Shippensburg, PA 17257
(717) 532-2211

Published in Public Opinion on May 15, 2014
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