Della Mae Erwin Sanders formerly of Walla Walla passed away peacefully in Meridian, Idaho, on March 8, 2013. Della Mae was born in Ione, Ore., on Dec. 23, 1922, the seventh of eight children born to Charles and Sarah Mae Lewis Erwin. At age 5, her family moved to a farm at Lamar, Wash., where she attended the one-room school at Lamar through grade school then on to Prescott High School. After high school graduation, she attended Walla Walla Business College.
She married Ted Sanders on Dec. 21, 1941, in Walla Walla. In 1946 after Ted’s service in the Air Force, they returned to Donovan Farms north of Walla Walla, where they lived, farmed and raised a family of two sons, Steve and David and a daughter, Cathy. Ted and Della Mae were very active in square dancing during those years.
After retirement from farming, they moved to town and enjoyed RV traveling across the country for a few years. Della joined the Prescott Presbyterian Church in 1940 and was later a long time active member of the Walla Walla First Presbyterian Church. She enjoyed teaching sewing as a 4-H leader when she was still on the farm and in later years delivering Meals on Wheels in Walla Walla and always caring for elder family members and relatives. In 2006, her husband of 65 years died and two years later she moved to the Boise area to be near most of her family.
Della Mae was preceded in death by her parents; three brothers; four sisters; her husband, Ted; daughter, Cathy; and grandson, Jonathan Sanders. She is survived by two sons, Steve and Mary Alice Sanders and David and Lynne Sanders; three grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.
The memorial funeral service will be held on Saturday, March 16, 2013, at 2 p.m. at the Herring Groseclose Funeral Home, 315 W. Alder, Walla Walla, with Rev. Albert Gillin officiating. Interment will follow at Blue Mountain Memorial Gardens. Memorial contributions may be made to First Presbyterian Church of Walla Walla or charity of choice through the funeral home. Family and friends are invited to sign the online guestbook at www.herringgroseclose.com.