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Ruth Ann Sander

Ruth Ann “Ruthie” Sander, 80, of Jackson, passed away Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022, at her home, with her son-in-law, Jeff, kneeling by her side and her family nearby.

She was born May 5, 1941, in Cape Girardeau, to Albert and Arlyn Hoffman Heider. She was baptized and confirmed at Emanuel United Church of Christ in Jackson. She and Darrell Sander were married Dec, 23, 1961, at Zion Lutheran Church in Gordonville.

Ruth Ann was a 1959 graduate of Jackson High School. She enjoyed attending the football and basketball games where she was always cheering on her high school sweetheart, Darrell. They shared together the honor of being awarded Football Queen and King for the Jackson High School Class of 1959.

Ruth earned her associate degree in business at the former Cape Business College. She worked in various local insurance agencies and companies, including Mutual of Omaha and United of Omaha, Charles Arnold Insurance Agency, and Norman Tullius Insurance Agency. Ruth Ann earned her insurance license in all lines, both agent and broker. She was an administrator and dispatcher for the former Sam Tanksley Trucking; earned her real estate agent’s and broker’s license while working for Hill Realty and Time Realty, then transitioned into medical office administration, working over 25 years for Dr. Clifford Talbert, Jr. and several years for Allergy Partners. She retired from St. Francis Medical Center Physician Associates in 2010 to take care of her mother.

Ruth Ann and Darrell have been members of St. John’s United Church of Christ since 1980 and were former members of Zion Lutheran Church in Gordonville and St. Paul Lutheran Church in Jackson.

She enjoyed horseback riding from an early age up into her adult life. She was a member of the Jackson Trail Riders for many years riding right beside her mother, Darrell, and her daughter, Lisa. She enjoyed helping her dad and Darrell with whatever needed to be done on the family farm. Ruth was not shy about helping with herding the cattle, raking hay, baling hay, stacking round bales, making sure the guys had plenty of water while hauling hay and preparing a meal for them when they were done. Ruth enjoyed bowling with friends as a pastime and on leagues at the Jackson Bowling Lanes; as well as grabbing a cheeseburger, fries, and a Coke before or after a game while visiting with friends.

Even after high school Wib’s Drive-In remained Ruthie’s favorite gathering place. On Saturdays when her mom finished up at Mary Lea Animal Clinic they’d meet at Wib’s for a quick lunch, later with her granddaughter to grab a quick after school snack where they both could visit and get their favorite combination bar-b-que, fries, and a Coke.

Many of the classmates from the Jackson High School Class of 1959 have shared that Ruth Ann will be missed as she was instrumental in keeping the classmates posted with the lives of those near and far.

Ruthie loved talking on the phone with her friends daily; as she looked forward to hearing about what was new in their lives, their families’ lives, and the community. Until her health started failing her, she looked forward to Thursdays. This was one day a week that she met with her lady classmates for breakfast and coffee club called Thursday’s Coffee Girls.

Loving survivors include her husband of 60 years, Darrell Sander of Jackson; a daughter, Lisa (Jeff) Craft of Jackson; a granddaughter, Alisha (Ben) McMillan and their 3 month old daughter, Lynnlee Grace McMillan, of Ashville, NC, a brother and sister-in-law, James “Jim” (Karen) Sander of Jackson, a sister-in-law, Sandy (the late, Don Sander) Schlosser of Sikeston; a niece, Michelle (Jeremy) Hohler, of Jackson, two nephews, Dane (Makenzie) Sander of Perryville, and Garrett Sander of St. Louis, paternal cousins with whom she was close, Shirley Mae Wilhelm of Whitewater, Richard (Carol) Walther, Ralph (Mary) Walther, Roy (Brenda) Walther, and Ronald (Pam) Walther, cherished friends, Betty Henry, Linda Goodson, and Elda Seibert, along with Thursday’s Coffee Girls, and her loyal canine friend that never left her side, Rosezee.

Also, surviving are three great nieces, three great nephews, one step niece, two step nephews and several step nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Albert and Arlyn Hoffman Heider and her father-in-law and mother-in-law, Edwin and Ida Wessel Sander, a brother-in-law, Don Sander, and paternal cousin and her husband, to whom she was dear and close, Alene (Albert) Walther.

Visitation is from 4:30 until 7 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 10, 2022, in Chapel A at McCombs Funeral Home and Cremation Center in Jackson, and from 10 a.m. until service time on Friday, Feb. 11, 2022, at St. John’s United Church of Christ in Fruitland.

The funeral is at 11 a.m., at the church, with Dr. Rodney Pensel and Pastor Sam Roethmeyer officiating.

Burial will follow in the church cemetery.

Serving as pallbearers are Ruthie’s cousins, Richard, Ralph, and Roy Walther; neighbors, Brian “Slim” Schoenebeck, Randy Ludwig, and friend, Roger Lang. Honorary pallbearers are Jeff Craft, Ben McMillan, Dane Sander, Garret Sander, Roy Walther, Doug Ludwig, Coach Bruce Thomas, and Steve Phelps. Ruth requested that her high school and longtime friends, Betty Henry, Beverly Nelson, Anita Sievers, Ruth Kasten, Karen Hitt, Carolyn Little, Jane Boren, Marilynn Eggimann, Janet Schuette, Carolyn “Sue” Jones, Jan Perdue DeWeese, and Gwen McSpadden Nussbaum be honored for their many years of loyalty, support, and most recently compassion and concern with her failing health.

Memorials may take the form of contributions to St. John’s United Church of Christ and or St. John’s United Church of Christ Cemetery Fund.

Ruth Ann’s family would like to give a special thank you to Fruitland Area Fire Protection District First Responders, Cape County Ambulance and Cape County Sherriff’ Department who braved the winter storm and took compassionate and diligent care of Ruth Ann.

Traditional gifts, cards and contributions may be sent to the family at McCombs Funeral Home, Inc. c/o Ruth Ann Sander, 640 West Independence Street, Jackson, Mo 63755.

Online condolences may be sent to the family by clicking on the TRIBUTES tab of Ruth Ann’s personal obituary page at

Jay Forness covers education, county government and community events for The Cash-Book Journal. He graduated from Southeast Missouri State University with a degree in multimedia journalism and has lived in Jackson for the past five years. He can be reached at

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