Celebrating the Life of
Saundra Lowery Chapman
Nothing can dim the light that shines from within
I am a Woman, Phenomenally.
Phenomenal Woman – that’s me
~ Maya Anjelou ~
A kind, generous and loving spirit; a family- loving woman of God; a teacher, a wife, mother and friend – such was the life and personality of Saundra Lowery Chapman. “Sandy,” as she was called by her co-workers, friends and family, touched the lives of many people with her smile, her generosity, strength and compassion. She never raised her voice but she spoke her mind and managed any task she undertook with grace and amazing calm. Paraphrasing the words of Maya Angelou, Sandy was indeed, a “Phenomenal Woman”.
Saundra Lowery Chapman was the firstborn of loving parents, Colon Lowery Jr. and Pauline Mason. Her parents welcomed her into this world in Union, New Jersey on August 11, 1944. She excelled in school. After graduation from Union High School in Union, New Jersey, she attended Central State University in Wilberforce, Ohio. There she met and married Claude M. Chapman, Jr., her college sweetheart. After moving to Detroit in 1964, Sandy ultimately earned a Bachelor and Master Degrees in Elementary Education and Early Childhood Education from Wayne State University.
From her union with husband, Claude, three children were born: Claude Maynard, III, Sheryl Renee, and Lamar Sandy managed to parent 3 children, whom she loved dearly, as well as love and embrace hundreds of “little ones” she taught as a pre-school teacher for 30 years in the Detroit Public Schools. Her capacity to love, to organize, to multi-task, to run a household and a classroom was amazing. Sandy loved family gatherings and socializing with her friends and family. She was an impeccable housekeeper. ” At Sandy’s house, everything was in place but she could make you feel so welcome and “at home.”
Church was always first and foremost throughout Sandy’s life. She was raised in the church, so when she left college and moved to Detroit, she joined People’s Community Church (PCC). She was no “seat warmer”. There she served as a Sunday school teacher, sang in the choir, served as an officer of the August Birthday Club, and served on the Steward Board. She helped with church fundraisers and served many a chicken dinner in the PCC Banquet Hall.
In 2006, Sandy moved to Mesa, Arizona to be close to her children and grandchildren. She kept in touch regularly with People’s Community church family but she found another church home at Phoenix’s Tanner AME. At Tanner, she continued to exhibit her passion for service to the church. Sandy made new friends and eagerly served as a member of the Women’s Missionary Society and the Intercessory Prayer Group. She taught Sunday School; conducted classes for high school seniors and worked in the Outreach Program for the Homeless. Until illness prevented Sandy from attending meetings and participating in church activities, she showed her love for the Lord. She studied her Bible and continued to grow in the knowledge of His word. She joyfully interacted with her children, grandchildren and her great grandchild. Sandy shared her strength, wit and wisdom until the very end.
On August 12, 2017, Sandy departed this life surrounded by the family she loved so dearly. Her love and her memory remain in the hearts of her children, Claude the III, Sheryl Renee Chapman, Lamar Chapman; grandchildren Ashley Chapman- Hawkes, (LaMar), Claude Michael Chapman, Andrew Chapman and Alexis Chapman; great grandchild Marcel Chapman; brother Colon; daughters-in-law Kristy and Dawn; mother–in-law Barbara Kondrick and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, extended family members and friends.
I Made It Home
Don’t weep for me for I have made it home
Through Heaven’s gates there I may roam
Wipe your tears and dry your eyes
I’m in a better place with Heaven as my prize
Don’t weep for me, no tears and no sorrow
Live for Jesus for He holds tomorrow