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Musings of a Philadelphia Physician who has served the community for six decades

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Marian B. Sanders, Quaker Activist, 87

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Marian Binford Sanders, 87, of Mount Airy, a former principal of Lansdowne Friends School who devoted her life to Quaker service, died following gallbladder surgery April 23 at Chestnut Hill Hospital.

Mrs. Sanders headed Lansdowne Friends from 1975 to 1981. During that time, her husband, Edwin, was director of Pendle Hill, a Quaker study center in Wallingford, where the couple lived and where she taught courses. In the early 1980s, the couple lived at Cambridge Friends Meeting in Massachusetts, where they ministered and supervised the facilities.

{Chestnut Hill}
Chestnut Hill

After retiring to Chestnut Hill in 1985, according to her son, David, Mrs. Sanders lectured on the poet William Blake at Pendle Hill, taught adult literacy, and cared for her husband, who had Alzheimer's disease, until his death in 1995.

She was dedicated to the concept of world citizenship, her son said, and opened her home to students and travelers from around the world. In 1997, she received an award from Earlham college in Indiana honoring her and her late husband for the "55 years of shared struggle for human justice, for an end to war ... and for broad service in the Society of Friends."

Mrs. Sanders grew up in Dayton, Ohio, and Butler, Pa. She earned a bachelor's degree from Earlham College and, in 1939, the year she married, a master's degree in English literature from Pennsylvania State University.

In 1940, her husband, a Quaker pacifist, was sentenced to federal prison for a year for refusing to register for the draft. After he was paroled, the couple taught at Pacific Ackworth Friends School in Temple City, Calif., which they helped found. For more than a year in the 1960s, they trained teachers in Kenya. Later, Mrs. Sanders taught English literature in Russia as an exchange teacher with the American Friends Service Committee.

In a addition to her son, David, she is survived by sons Michael, Richard, John, Robert and Erin; a daughter, Beth Sanders-Blevans; eight grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

A memorial service will be at 3 P.M. June 26 at Pendle Hill 338 Plush Mill Rd., Wallingford.

Memorial donations may be made to Lansdowne Friends School, 110 N. Lansdowne Ave. Lansdowne, Pa. 19050.

-Philadelphia Inquirer, May 15, 2004

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I was fortunate to have had two children in Pacific Ackworth. Our family lived in the Sander's house while they were in Africa. I will always be a Quaker at heart.
bobtorian@cox.net
Posted by: Bob Torian   |   Jan 4, 2011 12:46 PM
I was Michael's English teacher at Temple City High, and it is my fond hope that he will somehow see this and e-mail me at BobWicks@msn.com. So many of his friends miss him and cannot find him. His parents were both wonderful people.
Posted by: Bob Wicks   |   Jul 5, 2009 1:28 AM

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