Lona Madeline Saunders
Lona Madeline Saunders passed into heaven in Saint Helena, California, on June 9th . Lona was born on January 20, 1936 to Abe and Madeline Wipf. She spent her entire childhood growing up in Potter Valley on the family ranch. After graduating from Potter Valley High School in 1953, Lona headed to Santa Rosa Junior College and graduated with her degree in 1955.
Coming back to Mendocino County to live in Ukiah after college, she went to work for Masonite Corporation. This is where she met John H. Saunders. John was a widower with four young children. They married on February 15, 1958 and Lona became an instant mother. Several years passed before John and Lona added three more children to the family.
During the years of their marriage camping at the “Claim” in Ornbaun Valley and at the Coast in Albion was the highlight of vacation time. After the passing of John, Lona remained a central figure in the lives of all her children also providing day care for her grandchildren.
Lona volunteered time to the Grace Hudson Museum’s Sun House Gift Shop where she learned new skills and graciously contributed use of historic family photographs to the Historical Society of Mendocino County’s quarterly Journal.
Lona’s favorite pastime was to watch Jeopardy, Wheel of Fortune, and NCIS. She also really enjoyed Finding Your Roots! In addition, she loved attending local community concerts.
Lona is survived by children Brian, Kevin and Leanne Saunders, step-daughter Sandra Mike, step-daughter-in-law Janeen Saunders numerous grandchildren and great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband John Sr., parents Abe and Madeline Wipf, brother Kenneth Wipf, step-children Craig, Brent and John, Jr.
Graveside services will be held on Wednesday, June 22, 2022 at 11 am at Ukiah Cemetery.
Memorial donations can be made to the Grace Hudson Museum, Historical Society of Mendocino County or a favorite charity.