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Beth Gramling Sanders passed away Thursday, May 24, 2024, surrounded by her husband, Jim, and her daughters, Elizabeth and Sara Ann; she was 65. Beth was born in Elizabethtown,  Kentucky on November 28, 1958, and raised in Jonesboro, Arkansas. She attended college at Arkansas State University before completing her Master’s Degree at The University of Memphis. After college, Beth reconnected with her high school sweetheart, Jim Sanders. He proposed at Greer’s Ferry Lake in Arkansas and they were married on November 30, 1986, in Memphis, Tennessee. 

Beth’s talent and creativity left an indelible mark on the many lives she touched through her work in graphic design, copywriting, and her unwavering commitment to her faith and community. Beth’s career as a graphic designer was distinguished by her exceptional skills in both print and digital media. She was known for her meticulous attention to detail and her ability to create visually stunning newsletters, websites, and promotional materials. Her work not only captured the essence of her clients’ visions but also communicated their messages with clarity and impact.

Dedicated to her faith and her church family, she was an invaluable volunteer and was even employed for a time in the communications ministry at Christ United Methodist Church. However, her creative hours didn’t fit the 9-5 mold. A true night owl, Beth was often at her best after midnight and into the early morning hours. From her home office, she worked tirelessly behind the scenes making a mighty impact. She was an integral part of the launch of FollowOne International, and the ministry still uses the design Beth created more than 20 years ago. This is just one example of the many organizations that she contributed a great deal of value to bringing their cause to fruition. 

An early adopter of all things Apple, Beth embraced technology with enthusiasm and skill. She was among the first to use Twitter, encouraging her friends to join and becoming the first follower for many of them. Her forward-thinking approach to technology and social media greatly expanded her reach and influence, allowing her to connect with and inspire even more people.

Beth was smart, witty, steadfast, and strong. She had an advanced vocabulary and a knack for words which showed through her enjoyment in New York Times crossword puzzles.  Her family was always everything to her and she let everyone know – she talked about her family often and always led the charge in taking group photos, capturing special moments, and cataloging pictures to save and share. Many who loved her would say that she was always willing to help and when she did, she invested a hundred percent. She was a great teacher, a supportive friend, and like a second mom to some. She was joyful, goofy, generous, empathetic, and emotional. Beth made everyone around her feel safe and like they could always be themselves. She was loving, non-judgmental, and welcoming to all, and she found joy in the small things, always reminding us that “we’re rich in the ways that matter.”

In addition to spending time with her family, she loved her garden, the St. Louis Cardinals, deep belly laughs, the occasional oaky buttery chardonnay, interpretive dancing, unique traditions, and loud morning singing. She was shamelessly authentic, which is probably a big part of why so many people loved her so much. Beth would say that her other “bragging rights” include: raising two amazing girls, camping 12 hours for the original iPhone and 8 hours for iPad2, having Stan Musial’s and Lou Brock’s autographs, and “I get the Infield Fly Rule.”

Beth was a beacon of light and her legacy will live on in the beautiful ways she inspired others. 

Beth is preceded in death by her father, James Franklin Gramling; her grandmother, Virginia Dohogne; her grandfather Linus Dohogne; her nephew Sam VanScoy; her sister-in-law Valerie Gramling; her aunt and uncle Betty and Larry Brewer. 

Beth leaves behind dearly loved family and friends: her devoted husband, Jim; her daughters, Elizabeth and Sara Ann; her beloved mother, Martha Gramling; her sister Sara VanScoy with Robbie VanScoy and her ‘nephew sons’ Will VanScoy and Joey VanScoy, his wife Jackie VanScoy (and soon Theodore VanScoy); her brother Jimbo Gramling and her nieces and nephews Annabel, Madeline, James, and Elliot Gramling; her church families at Cornerstone United Methodist Church in Jonesboro, Arkansas and Christ United Methodist Church in Memphis, Tennessee; her Memphis communities in tech, twitter, and GiveCamp, along with many close friends. 

If so inclined, please donate In lieu of flowers to Manna House, Memphis or Cornerstone United Methodist Church. 

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