Photography

Gloria Sanderson

March 9, 2024

Gloria Sanderson Obituary

In the early morning of March 9, 2024, at her cherished home of nearly 70 years, Gloria Sanderson, affectionately known as "Nanny", quietly transitioned from this life at the age of 93. 

Gloria was born on August 17, 1930, in Connecticut to the late Martha and Herman Stevens: just one year and two weeks after her older sister and lifelong friend, Helen R. Sanderson. Her family relocated to New Jersey, where she completed her primary education in the Hamilton Township school district. She would later earn her associate degree in Bookkeeping. 

On April 26, 1953, Gloria married John H. Sanderson. Together, they planted their lives in Trenton, NJ. Soon after, they welcomed their first of five children, Karen, into the world. The birth of Patricia followed, then John, Jr. (the couple's only son), Gloria ( Jr.), and, finally, Fran: transforming the once-quiet house on  Walnut Avenue  into a bustling hub of star athletes, artists, and jokesters. 

Professionally, Gloria dedicated over 30 years to Transamerica Delaval, Inc. as a Bookkeeper. But her impact extended far beyond the office walls. In the afternoons and evenings, Gloria donned a different hat—a nurse's cap—as she cared for the girls at The Group Home for Girls in Trenton. Gloria's nurturing spirit knew no bounds: she poured her heart into, both, her professional and personal roles, and took great pride in doing so. 

Her love for the Lord was unwavering, and she found solace within the walls of El-Bethel Baptist Church  and later at Calvary Missionary Baptist Church. As a devoted nurse, she ministered to those in need, offering comfort and compassion to all who crossed her path. 

Gloria was more than her titles and roles. She was the heartbeat of her neighborhood: her home a Wilbur Section staple; her pool one of the many   things she shared with the children in the community. Her  summer cookouts, mouth-watering  chicken dinners and  famous  icees kept a hungry crowd on her front and back porches. Her legendary culinary talent made it difficult for anyone to resist her cooking; even the police officers that walked the beat knew where to go for a delicious meal and warm hospitality! 

And, when Christmas, her favorite holiday, arrived, Walnut Avenue sparkled with the magic of Nanny's beautiful decorations. Neighborhood children gathered to sing carols in front of her house each year, their voices echoing the joy she brought to their lives! 

In the heart of her home, Gloria's television was always on, as she faithfully tuned into one of her three favorite soap operas, a lively game show, or a thrilling sporting event. Her passion for the New York Yankees, the New York Knicks, and the Olympic games was profound, and her love for Reggie Jackson was, for years, passionately exhibited by an oversized poster mounted on the door of her bedroom closet. 

In her leisure time, Gloria reveled in the company of family and friends. She worked diligently so that her children could enjoy the fruits of her labor and cherished the experiences she shared with each one of them. Her love  for sports transcended the television screen. She would take her children to the New York Yankees Stadium in the Bronx and proudly watched their faces light up as they received wooden bats from the players to add to their growing collection at home. 

On  weekends, "Aunt  Go-Go", as she was affectionately called by her nephews and nieces, would take the kids to the Greenwood Dairy. A highlight of her weekend, Gloria would treat the children and their friends to the Dairy's mountainous ice cream cones and watch in delight and amusement as the children spent what seemed like a lifetime finishing their desserts! 

Amusement parks also held a special place in her heart, as she and her family became regulars at Palisades Amusement Park. Gloria's favorite ride,"The Swiss Bob" (commonly known as "The Music  Express"), remains the collective family favorite across generations of amusement park trips! Her daughter, Patricia, would later carry the torch and sponsor countless Dorney Park trips! family and for the neighborhood kids. 

Perhaps one of Gloria's greatest pleasures was supporting Pat and her son, John, Jr, at their track meets. Gloria could be found at every game, high-spirited, cheering proudly for her track star as well as providing snacks for their teammates. As her children blossomed into adulthood, Gloria looked forward to her annual adventure to Las Vegas with special friend and coworker Brenda Reeves: a tradition she cherished greatly. Their preferred lodging was always the Circus-Circus hotel and casino, as she enjoyed spending hours of playing the slot machines and Blackjack. She made each journey special for her daughters and grandchildren residing in Vegas by gifting them her unique "care packages" filled with pizza, steak sandwiches, Devil Dogs, and Tasty Cakes: a little piece of home whose aroma made the plane smell like DeVito's. 

She enjoyed  laughing that one-of-a-kind laugh of hers with her one-of-a-kind daughter, especially when Fran refused to eat Hellmann's mayonnaise's west coast equivalent, "Best Food", simply because the jar didn't have the "Hellmann's" label on it. She also found humorous the times her granddaughters and great granddaughters would throw on one of her nightgowns  and good wigs and prance around the house pretending to be her. She would grin widely, and, with her happy squinty eyes, call them all "Dummies". 

Gloria found joy in the simple pleasures of life. Her nurturing spirit was evident in her care for the many plants that adorned the interior of her home and her front porch. And anyone who knew her knew that she loved k a good scratch-off! Scratch-offs remained her gift of choice for every holiday birthday and special occasion, and it didn't matter if she won one dollar or one hundred dollars she was simply  happy to win something. She also enjoyed going to bingo nights with her daughter Karen, eating Haagen Dazs ice cream, clipping coupons, and playing a quiet game of solitaire while talking to her sister on the phone. 

Gloria's home was a haven of joy and laughter, especially when her grandchildren and great-grand-children were over. The simple act of putting together puzzles will forever be a cherished memory. The mere  sight of any of her grands made Nanny's Day exponentially better, as she would ask anyone with a baby the notorious question: "Are you shaping the baby's head?" 

She also took great pleasure in hosting casino nights at her home. As night fell, her home would transform into a lively gathering place, with family and friends coming together to play Blackjack, Poker, and Pokeno: another family staple that transcended generations and allowed for fun banter and intense competition. These moments, filled with warmth and solidarity, were a true reflection of Gloria's generous spirit and pure love for her family. 

Gloria's true joy lay in giving. She found comfort in raising her children, delight in witnessing her grandchildren and great-grandchildren  grow  and flourish, and fulfillment in helping and nourishing others. She truly embodied the spirit of her favorite animal, the elephant: Strong, wise, spiritual, and prosperous. She believed in living life to the fullest and finding beauty in everything. Her existence touched everyone's life in an unforgettable way, which is why she is Nanny to all! 

Gloria was preceded in death by her parents, Martha and Herman Stevens; her husband, John H. Sanderson, Sr; her sister and brother-in-law, Helen and George Sanderson, Sr.; her niece, Lillian Phillips, whom she affectionately called "Tootsie", and Son-in-Law, Billy L. Carter, Sr. 

The grace of her legacy and her memories are cherished by her five children: Karen A. Haynes (Emory), Patricia D. Billups (Ben), John H. Sanderson, Jr. (Helen), Gloria R. Sanderson, and Fran R. Carter (Billy, Sr.); four loving nephews: Bubby, Pudney. Poppy, and Raymond (Phyllis); 14 grandchildren: Tameka (Toschia), Tasha (Darren), Leon, III (Qgiseerah), Rakima (Raheim), John III, Erin (Kris), Tiffany (Ben), Jennifer, Billy, Jr., Tamarya (Danny), Gabrielle (Louis), Johnnae (Kenneth), Micah (Alexx), and Precious; two special grandchildren: Sheila Ellis and Kathy Gaines; 31 great-grandchildren, one great-great-granddaughter; special friend, John K. Hughes, Jr.; and a host of nieces, cousins, and family friends. 

Gloria's legacy is forever etched in the hearts of all who were blessed to cross paths with her. As we bid farewell to Nanny, we celebrate a life exceptionally lived a bountiful life that impacted each of ours in countless beautiful ways. May her memory continue to shine as brightly as her Christmas lights that illuminated Walnut Avenue. Rest in peace, dear Mommy, Nanny, Aunt Go-Go. Your spirit lives on in the laughter, the stories, and the esteemed moments you gifted us! 

The family of the late Gloria Sanderson would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to the entire staff and family at Hughes Funeral  Home for making  Nanny's transition home truly heartfelt. Your compassion and support during this difficult time is deeply appreciated! 

                            Speak of me as you have always done 
                          Remember the good  times, laughter and fun 
                           Share the happy memories  we've made 
                               Do not let them wither or fade. 
                            I'll be with you in the summer's sun 
                            And  when the winter's chill has come 

                           SO PUT ON YOUR HOUSECOAT 
                                      -Love,  Nanny 

 

Funeral service will be 11:30am Thursday, March 21, 2024 at Hughes Funeral Home, 324 Bellevue Ave., Trenton, NJ 08618. Calling hours will be 10am until the time of service. Interment will be at Ewing Church Cemetery, Ewing, NJ.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Gloria Sanderson, please visit our floral store.

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Services

Calling Hours
Thursday
March 21, 2024

10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Hughes Funeral Home
324 Bellevue Ave, Trenton
Trenton, NJ 08618

Funeral Service
Thursday
March 21, 2024

11:30 AM
Hughes Funeral Home
324 Bellevue Ave, Trenton
Trenton, NJ 08618

Interment

Ewing Church Mausolem
100 Scotch Rd
Ewing Twp., NJ 08628

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