Saturday, November 4, 1916 - Friday, October 27, 2017
Elijah Harold Saunders, a resident of Malvern AL, died October 27, 2017 at the grand age of 100 years. Called by most Mr. E.H. or simply Granddaddy, he was known for his zany sense of humor, his always steady manner, and his guiding wisdom. Mr. Saunders was born in Malvern in the farm home of his parents Mr. Joseph Richard Saunders and Mrs. Ethel Mathews Saunders on November 4, 1916. He was the last of his childhood family, surviving his brothers Herbert Crane Saunders, and Robert Roger Saunders USA WWII, and his sister Reba Saunders Culpepper. Mr. Saunders married Julia Patrick Saunders in 1940. She passed away in 1973. He remarried in 1980 to Mrs. Neva Jo McClenny Saunders. He is survived by her and a son, Bobby Jo Saunders and his wife Kathy Gossett Saunders; three grandchildren: Patrick Saunders, Terri Jo Shepard and her husband Rocky, and Joseph M. Saunders and his wife Kim. They are the children of Bobby's first wife, the late Glynda Merritt Saunders. There are five great-grandchildren: Cade Shepard, Julia Alexis Turvin and her husband Josh, Savanna Saunders, Chase Saunders, and Emory Shepard and his wife Rachel, who are expecting Mr. Saunders great-great-grandchild Ellis Grace in February. Also included are two nieces: Beverly Aplin, and Anita Caraway, and a nephew, Herbert Saunders. During his century of life, Saunders was known for his expertise as a builder, and his ability on the athletic field and his love of sports. At the time of his death, he was the eldest Slocomb Redtop. He was a running back for the team from 1932-1935 and was famously known as "Galloping Joe" the name perhaps borrowed from his father. During his professional years, he was a Construction Contractor, a semi-pro baseball player in the late 30's for Pepperell Cotton Mills. During the 1950's and 60's, Saunders owned two local stock car race tracks and was part owner of the semi-pro football team the Dothan Colts. Mr. Saunders was a member of the Malvern Baptist Church. A graveside service will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Monday, October 30, 2017 in the Malvern Baptist Church Cemetery with Rev. Hosea Parker officiating and Sorrells Funeral Home & Crematory of Slocomb directing.