OBITUARY: Rose Ann White Saunders


Rose Ann White Saunders, 80, retired and quietly led her life caring for others until her death on Thursday, August 10, 2023.

Born on April 28, 1943 in St Albans, West Virginia, she was the daughter of the late Woodrow Wilson White and the late Lucy Violet Moore White.

During World War II, her mother awaited her husband’s return, after he was a prisoner of War. Rose Ann was a bashful 3 years old and he knew he had to win her heart somehow. On the way home he stopped by a pawn shop and picked up an old guitar. He wooed her for the rest of his life with cute artsy folk songs.

Rose Ann grew up to be a beautiful woman with strong principles that were so strong that other girls talked about her. One girl went out with a devout Christian guy, John Saunders, who just knew they weren’t made for each other. She then told John about her friend, Rose Ann, and how she thought he should meet her because they were so like-minded. A month after their first date he popped the question. Six months later they eloped to Arkansas and began a 59-year adventure.

Mr. and Mrs. Saunders lived in Boles Ridge, West Virginia as cattle farmers and moved three years later to Columbia, Tennessee. She was employed mostly with her husband – caring for him and her three children until they were nearly grown.

During her adult years, she enjoyed being a seamstress and loved quilting, crocheting and embroidery. For several years, Mrs. Saunders worked at Columbia Academy as a preschool teacher and later at Mail Call sending out packages. She was a member of the Jackson Heights Church of Christ and had many church family members there whom she loved dearly.

Survivors include her two children, Brady Saunders of Summertown; Terry Lynn (David) Ortiz of Columbia; seven grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by her daughter, Karen Brown of Culleoka.

Funeral services will be conducted Monday, August 14, 2023 at 1:30 PM at Oakes & Nichols Funeral Home with David Stofel, Clay Gentry, and Brady Saunders officiating. Burial will follow in Neapolis Cemetery. The family will visit with friends Monday from 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM at the funeral home.

Active pallbearers will be Landon Saunders, Jotham Saunders, Gage Saunders, Nash Saunders, Zaiden Cochran, Fernado Garcia Escalona, Montana Ortiz, Sebastian Ortiz, Maryn Saunders, and Barbie Ortiz.

The family suggests memorials to The Shelter, Inc. 615 W Point Rd, Lawrenceburg, TN 38464; Office for Victims of Crime, Att OVC Director, 810 7th St. NW, 2nd Floor Washington, D.C. 20531; Justice For Homicide Victims P.O. Box 4202 Cerritos, California 90703; Cold Case Advocacy at; or National Crime Victims Agenda at

Condolences may be extended online at


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