Clifton Ramsey Sanders
Clifton Ramsey Sanders
  • September 27, 1945 - August 7, 2017
  • Plano, Texas

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Clifton Ramsey Sanders passed away Monday, August 7, 2017. He was born Thursday, September 27, 1945, in Concord, North Carolina at the home of his grandparents, to Major "Rock" Sanders and Bessie Ramsey Sanders. The couple welcomed their approximate 7 pound bundle of joy at 7:30PM along with his older brother, Major Spencer Sanders, Jr. The family would later welcome Clifton's younger sister, Marjorie Kathleen Sanders.

Clifton was a very outgoing child. As children, Clifton and Major were very close. He was a very kind child and would give you the shirt off his back, but don't anger him, as he was known to have a temper. Clifton's father accepted a position at Henderson Institute, a black high school, and moved the family to Henderson, North Carolina where he would spend his childhood in the family home that his father built in 1955. Clifton attended Eaton Johnson Elementary and Middle School. He made good grades in grade school but was something of a mischief-maker. This is where he met his great friend and dog, Rexy. Clifton has always been a persistent take charge type of person. This trait made him something of a hero to his younger sister, Marjorie. Her favorite story to tell is of his teaching her to tie her shoes when all others failed to teach her. To help Marjorie be less self-conscious of this as a child, her mother tended to purchase her only buckle shoes. One day, Clifton noticed that Marjorie was walking around oddly, as she was wearing shoes with laces. This was undoubtedly to not trip. Clifton asked his mother, "Momma, why is Marjorie sticking her shoes out with the strings on them?" As his mother replied, "That's because she doesn't know how to tie her shoes." Clifton replied, "Well, I'm going to help you fix that problem." Clifton then sat Marjorie on a cedar blanket chest, now a family heirloom, and proceeded to teach her to tie her shoes until Marjorie was a certified professional.

Clifton attended Henderson Institute and then moved on to North Carolina A&T State University where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Biology, Bachelor of Science in Chemistry, and a minor in History. Upon graduation he moved on to Wake Forest University, Bowman Gray School of Medicine where he earned his Masters in Bio-Chemistry. He then attended Southern Methodist University where he earned his Executive Masters of Business Administration and Marketing & Finance Degree.

He served in the United States Naval Armed Forces during The Vietnam War as a Lieutenant.

Clifton was blessed with a son, Darrin Ramsey Sanders, whom he cherished and loved.

Clifton made a career as a Bio-Chemist in the Personal Care Industry with specialization in percutane absorption. He enjoyed a life-long career and worked with such companies as Mary Kay, Maybelline, BeautiControl Cosmetics, and many more.

In September of 2000, Clifton married the love of his life, Rebecca Rivera and the two shared many wonderful years together before his untimely passing.

Remembering Clifton will bring a smile to all who knew and loved him. Everyone always knew where they stood with him. He was never one to shy away from helping people to learn and grow to be the best they could be. He always had a willingness to help others. He was a loving husband and father. He had a streak of stubbornness about him, undoubtedly from both his parents. He was even tempered, but you never wanted to make him angry! Clifton received many personal traits from his father, but was graced with his mother's sense of humor and love of cooking. He was a very intelligent man, and often humorously quoted that he was "Living proof that an education could be wasted."

Clifton enjoyed sport, mostly baseball, football, basketball, and golf. He loved the outdoors, whether on the beach or in the mountains, he found it to be his place of peace. He was an avid listener of Jazz music. He was a member of the African American Episcopalian Zion Church - AMEZ.

A few "Cliftonisms" that will have his friends and family smiling out loud when they fondly think back on them are, "Piss on the fire, boys, this hunt's over," "In life, you can be the 'er' or the 'ee'. You always want to be the 'er'" and "I learned to never trust my mother. She cheated at Penuckle!"

Clifton is preceded in death by his father, Major "Rock" Sanders and mother, Bessie Ramsey Sanders.

Clifton leaves many to cherish his memory among those his wife, Rebecca, son, Darrin, brother, Major Sanders, and sister, Marjorie Sanders.

Arrangements under the direction of Ted Dickey West Funeral Home, Dallas, Texas.