Mildred Spieth Sanders (Billie) passed away peacefully on February 21, 2023, at her residence in Ocala, Florida. She was 90.
Born in Jacksonville, Florida on November 13, 1932, as the second daughter to John Peyton and Mildred Melville Spieth, Billie moved frequently as a child and attended schools in Atlanta, Cincinnati, Detroit, and finally Palm Beach where she graduated high school in 1951. She then went to work for Aetna in Miami and became their first female adjuster. In 1957 Billie met the love of her life at a holiday party, James A. Sanders (Sandy), married him shortly thereafter on the steps of City Hall in Miami, and then built a home and a happy life in Hialeah, Florida. Billie and Sandy adopted their son Gary, their only child, in 1962, and Billie chose to remain home to pursue her dream of being a mother and homemaker. Billie and Sandy moved to Melbourne, Florida in 1986 where they enjoyed starting their retirement, traveling, and becoming grandparents.
Billie’s secret to remaining happy in life was finding contentment in all things that came her way. After becoming a young widow in 1994, she learned to become independent and enjoyed volunteering at the Daily Bread, taking long 2 mile walks every day befriending strangers and making new friends, tending to her hundreds of plants, working crossword and logic puzzles, playing card games, spending time with her son and his family, as well her adult nieces, and all things Elvis. Her family and friends were the closest things to her heart- in Hialeah, Melbourne, and finally at the Windsor in Ocala.
Billie was preceded in death by her parents, husband, sister (Betty McElwee), and niece (Bonnie Caraker). She is survived by her son Gary (Sandy) in Ocala, FL, grandson Kyle (Hannah) and her great granddaughter Zoe, in Darien, CT, grandson Brad (Katelynn) in Gainesville, FL, niece Judy McElwee, in Miami, FL, great niece Jennifer Caraker, and grand-great niece Amanda Caraker, both in Jacksonville, FL.
Services will be held in the Chapel of First United Methodist of Ocala on March 11, 2023, at 11 a.m. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Hospice of Marion County.