Deaths of Note

Published on November 18th, 2014 |


Gov. Carl Sanders’ memorial service in Buckhead Saturday

Former Gov. Carl E. Sanders Sr., who sought during the mid-1960s to lead Georgia away from its segregationist past, died on Sunday. He was 89.

A memorial service honoring Gov. Sanders will be held Saturday at 11 a.m. at Second Ponce de Leon Baptist Church, located at the corner of Peachtree and East and West Wesley roads in Buckhead, where he was an active member for much of his life.

Due to the large number of participants expected for the service, the Family Life Center at the church will be closed until 2 p.m. and all morning aerobics classes and Dynamo Swill Lessons have been cancelled. The Family Life Center will

Former Gov. Carl Sanders

Former Gov. Carl Sanders

open at 2 p.m.

It also is anticipated that traffic in the area of Peachtree and East and West Wesley roads will be snarled due to the ceremony for Gov. Sanders at Second Ponce de Leon Church and the weekly Peachtree Road Farmers Market that is held every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 12 noon in the parking lot of The Cathedral of St. Philip, across the street.

The following are excerpts from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s news obituary:

As a young man, Sanders gave up his role as a quarterback at the University of Georgia to go off to a war. He learned to fly a bomber, which he named in honor of his home state. He dated a Hollywood starlet. He became a lawyer, then a lawmaker, then the state’s 74th governor — all by the age of 37 — then went on to become a leading business figure.

As a state representative, Sanders beat a segregationist political machine, bringing a moderate Democrat’s voice and vision to Atlanta.

As a state senator, he urged then-Gov. Ernest Vandiver to desegregate Georgia’s public schools.

As a governor, he shepherded Georgia through a population explosion, underscored by the growing demands of an increasingly urbanized state. Schools and airports flourished during his tenure. Big-time sports — the Atlanta Braves and Falcons — came to Atlanta while he was in office.

As a leader, Sanders helped bring a progressive government to Georgia, which had been dominated by lawmakers from rural areas. He sought to create a New South.
And as a businessman, he and two partners took about $300 and launched a law firm that now employs about 600 attorneys in offices from Atlanta to Hong Kong.

As word of his death spread, Sanders’ allies and opponents recalled a man who led Georgia when the state needed a strong hand.

During most of his life, Sanders was active in the YMCA and was a member of the board of the YMCA of Metropolitan Atlanta. The YMCA facility on Moores Mill Road in Buckhead was named the Carl Sanders YMCA in his honor.

His family has designated the YMCA of Metropolitan Atlanta, along with the University of Georgia School of Law, for those wishing to make memorial donations in memory of Gov. Sanders. Online condolences can be made at

For the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s full news obituary on Gov. Sanders, click here. For a photo gallery of his life, click here.

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