Sandra Lee Kelly (née Cummings), 68, after a long struggle with illness, went home to be with her Lord on the 27th of October, 2018 surrounded by her loving family. A Celebration of Life Service will be held on Tuesday, October 30, 2018 at 1pm at Edgewood Presbyterian Church at 316 West McIntosh Street, Sanford, NC. The service will be followed by a brief graveside service at White Hill Presbyterian Church, 3335 White Hill Road, Sanford, NC.
She was preceded in death by her parents, C.L. and Betty Jo Shinault Cummings, and her son, Patrick Shane Kelly.
She is survived by her husband of almost 50 years, Ronnie Gene Kelly; son and daughter-in-law, Brad and Emily Colebrook Kelly, daughter Christie Kelly, her sister and brother-in-law, Linda and Bob LaRue , sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Sue and Larry McRae, and many beloved nieces and nephews.
Born on the 23rd of June, 1950 in Sanford, N.C., Sandra was the youngest of two daughters. She spent much of her childhood on her family’s farm where she thrived. She was very close to her grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins.
On the 9th of November, 1968, Sandra married her high school sweetheart and the love of her life: Ronnie Gene Kelly. The couple spent the first years of married life in California while Ronnie served our nation in the US Navy.
The Kellys welcomed their first son, Patrick in 1971, followed by daughter Christie in 1981 and son Brad in 1983.
Sandra spent many years as a data processor at Texfi, Maxway’s and Davenport's before opening her children’s clothing store, Kelly’s Station, in downtown Sanford. She spent many years afterwards working at West Lee Middle School, J Glenn Edwards Elementary, and Floyd L Knight.
Having a heart for children with special needs and hoping to improve the life of her own daughter, she joined with two other special needs families to establish the t.l.c. home in 1984. The name “”tender loving care” is an acronym taken from the names of three special children- “C” is, of course, for Christie. 35 years later, this 10- bed, non-profit immediate care facility is available for individuals with intellectual, developmental, or functional disorders.
Always working with and for children and adults with special needs, she offered freely her love and support. Her natural desire to nurture and encourage others extended beyond her own family. She was one of the Troop Leaders for the Pine of the Carolinas Girl Scout Troop #1175, the only troop for special needs girls. For more than twenty years, she participated in Special Olympics.
Sandra was a natural baker who enjoyed preparing the bread for communion at her home church, Edgewood Presbyterian. Sandra joined Edgewood as a child and, as a faithful member, served in many roles in the church including Elder, circle moderator, circle chairman, Sunday School teacher, youth leader, and choir member.
Sandra was known by many names- daughter, sister, wife, mother, niece, cousin, friend and she excelled in each of those roles. Perhaps, however, her most meaningful role was daughter of Jesus. Sandra possessed the ability to make every single person she spoke to know that they mattered to her. No matter what her personal status, she consistently put others first. She lived with the knowledge of Christ in her heart.
Sandra will be missed by all who knew her.
Visitation will be held Monday, October 29 from 6-8pm at Rogers-Pickard, Carthage Street, Sanford, NC.
Memorial donations in Sandra’s honor may be made to t.l.c. home at 1775 Hawkins Avenue, Sanford NC 27330 or to Edgewood Presbyterian 316 W. McIntosh Street, Sanford, NC 27330.
t.l.c. Home, Inc
1775 Hawkins Avenue, Sanford NC 27330
Edgewood Presbyterian Church
316 W. McIntosh Street, Sanford NC 27330