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Ellen Elizabeth VanDevender

May 27, 1921 ~ September 1, 2018 (age 97)

Ellen Elizabeth VanDevender passed away peacefully on September 1, 2018, surrounded by friends and family. She was 97.

She was preceded in death by her husband Willie, their infant daughter Virginia, and her brothers Orville, Bill, Earl and George House and a sister Sarah Burt-Elzey.

She is survived by her four children, nine grandchildren, and 21 great-grandchildren.  Her surviving children are daughters Connie (C. K.) of Citra, FL and Bonnie Ann (Marvin) Clark of Callahan, FL, her sons William Tyrone (Sue) VanDevender of Fort Myers, FL and Benny Lee (Shelvia) VanDevender of Leesburg, GA.  

Her grandchildren are: C.K. Lee (Joy) of Colleyville, TX and Cynthia Lee (Jay) of Marietta, GA, Duane VanDevender (Ann), Stuart VanDevender (Crystal), and Bill VanDevender (Alesha), all of Fort Myers, FL, Stacy (Hal) Chaffins, of Birmingham, AL, and Brian VanDevender (Emily), of Leesburg, GA, and Tanya McCune (Jason) of Flower Mound, TX and Brenda Rouch (Dan), of Norfolk, VA.


Funeral Service will be 11:00 a.m., Saturday, September 8, 2018, at Countryside Funeral Home, Anthony, FL with George Lee and Kathy Glazebrook officiating. She will be laid to rest in Ft. Myers Memorial Gardens, Sunday, September 9, 2018 at 2:00 p.m. Arrangements are under the care of Countryside Funeral Home, Anthony, FL. 


Ellen was born to Alvin and Premelia House on May 27, 1921, in Delaware County, IN.  In 1941, she met Willie VanDevender and they were married April 12 of that year. Willie and Ellen were farmers in central Indiana until January 1956, when they and their four children moved to Southwest Florida. They were ranchers, builders and land developers in the greater Fort Myers area until Willie’s passing in 1965. 

Ellen continued residing in her home on Becker Drive in North Fort Myers until 1996.  Her home there was open weekly for Sunday morning and Wednesday night fellowship meetings.  It was also the setting for many of her grandchildren’s greatest childhood memories.  

In 1996, she moved to be near her daughter in Ocala, FL. She lived independently well into her 90s, spending her final four years at Life Care Center in Ocala. 

Ellen will be remembered for her devotion to her faith, her family and for the love she provided to so many of us who were blessed to grow up in her shadow. 

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