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Jerry Sandford


1931 - 2020
Jerry Sandford Obituary
Jerry Sandford, 88, of Hampton, passed away on Tuesday, February 11, 2020. He was preceded in death by his wife of 62 cherished years, Lois; his son, Philip; his parents, Harwood and Sudie Sandford, and his sister, Trudy Sandford. He is survived by his son, Jeffery, and wife, Laura; and his grandson, Grayson.

Jerry was born on June 4, 1931 in Petersburg, Virginia. Shortly thereafter, the family moved to Goldsboro, North Carolina, where he spent his formative years until graduating from high school. He then entered East Carolina College and obtained a B.S. degree in Education. While there he met and later married the girl of his dreams, Lois Simpson. At that time, and because of the Korean War, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy, was sent to Officer Candidate School in Newport, Rhode Island, where he was commissioned Ensign, and was assigned to the US Amphibious Force in Little Creek/ Norfolk, Virginia. He served on several troop transport ships (APA), with the mission of landing military troops on foreign beaches. He considered his period of military service a special time in his life. Four years later he was honorably discharged from the Navy and moved to Hampton, where he began a career in broadcasting in 1957 as an announcer at WVEC Radio. At that time there were numerous radio stations, but only two commercial television stations. WVEC applied for and obtained a license for Channel 13, an ABC Network affiliate. Thus, he had the opportunity for a dual career in radio and TV. In 1959, Jerry's role at WVEC expanded when he became, "Bungles the Clown" and hosted a live afternoon show. Some may remember his scary character, Ronald, on the Friday evening show, "Shock Theatre," and the Bungles Wave. During this time he obtained a Master's Degree in Educational Supervision from The College of William and Mary, and after leaving WVEC in 1973, he returned to his educational roots when employed to direct information and publications for the Hampton School Division. He retired after 23 years as director of community relations and clerk of the Hampton School Board. However, the retirement was brief because he was asked to assist in the communications department of Newport News Public Schools for a brief period of time - that brief period turned into 11 years. Jerry and Lois were active in St. Mark's United Methodist Church; he by teaching Sunday School, and she by serving in church circles. They both sponsored the youth fellowship for several years. The Outer Banks became the family's second home each summer with wonderful memories, especially for Phil and Jeff, of fun in the sun and great seafood. Jerry loved reading, classic cars, (especially convertibles), watching Masterpiece Mysteries and working in his flower garden. He loved all kinds of flowers, but the rose was his favorite. Jerry will be remembered for his beautiful smile and generous spirit. He never met a stranger.

There will be a Celebration of Life on Sunday, March 1, from 1-5 pm, at the Commanding General's Residence, 33 Fenwick Road, Fort Monroe. Because this is an historic property, no high heels are allowed. Inurnment will be private. In lieu of flowers, friends are requested to contribute to the American Red Cross or their favorite charity. Arrangements by R. Hayden Smith Funeral Home.
Published in Daily Press from Feb. 23 to Feb. 27, 2020
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