Anitra Jeanne (Snipe) Sullivan, 90, returned to her beloved Jesus 30, July 2021 from her residence in Clarksville, TN following a joyful, and saintly life of service, achievements, and loving relationships.
Services will be Thursday, August 5, 2021 at 12:00 noon at Immaculate Conception Church at 709 Franklin Street, Clarksville TN. Burial will follow in Greenwood Cemetery.
Visitation for friends will be from 4:00-7:00 PM Wednesday August 4th at Sykes Funeral home 424 Franklin Street, Clarksville and again from 11:00 AM until the time of service at the church.
She was a native of, and grew up in, Tuscaloosa, AL. She was the daughter of William Snipe and Lilian (Fulbright) Snipe. She was preceded in death by her husband, Edward L. Sullivan, her brother, William Leo Snipe, and her daughter Susan Karpinecz. She retired from the Montgomery County school system after teaching the arts and music for 21 years.
Survivors include Children: Barbara Sullivan & Richard Sharkey of Wind Lake WI, Edward (Patrick) & Lorna Sullivan of Zion, IL, Michael & Chris Sullivan of Seminole, FL, Terrance & Lynette Sullivan of Charleston SC, Helen & Vic Cordier of Madisonville, AL, Hilary & Teresa Sullivan of Clarksville, TN, Bob Karpinecz (widower of Susan) of Clarksville, TN, and Jane & Jay Brand of Clarksville, TN. In addition, she leaves a legacy of 18 grandchildren and 37 of great-grandchildren.
Mrs. Sullivan was the oldest of three children of her widowed mother. From the age of twelve, she helped raise her siblings while her mother worked to provide for the family. She graduated High School at the age of 16, and went on to the University of Alabama where she studied music and home economics. She met her husband, Edward Sullivan, through the Newman clubs of University of Alabama, and Ole Miss, and they were married in May 29. 1951 at St. John’s Roman Catholic Church in Tuscaloosa AL.
In her early career she worked in the banking industry as a teller, then later in bookkeeping while raising her eight children and maintaining her home. In addition, she studied piano in Chicago and was active with her church.
In 1975, when her youngest three children were in high school, Anitra returned to college at Austin Peay State University (APSU) to finish her degree. She completed her BS in Music Education in May of 1979.
She began her second career in education in the Fall of 1979 at Ringgold Elementary school as a music teacher. She conceived, and implemented, numerous programs for the students at Ringgold including developing a school partnership with the Nashville ballet to enable the underserved children at her school to attend live performances of the ballet. She also choreographed, and produced a school production of Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker enabling many students to participate in their first classical musical and dance production. While at Ringgold, she concurrently returned to APSU to pursue her Masters in Music education which she completed within a year.
From there Anitra went to New Providence Middle school. As a teacher of the arts, she obtained grants for commercial grade kilns, and established a ceramic, porcelain, and pottery art studio at the school. In addition, she envisioned, planned, organized and established a school sponsored Renaissance Festival. She recruited artisans and performers from around the country to come to display their arts and perform their acts. This included: sword swallowers, fire eaters, jugglers, painters, dancers and many others. She organized mothers to help sew period costumes which she designed, to allow the children to participate as well as attend. She also choreographed and produced plays/musicals including the Nutcracker and Sleeping Beauty. Again, focusing on expanded opportunity and exposure to the arts for her underserved students. In her capacity in the production of her plays, she again organized a team of moms to help sew the costumes she designed. She worked to obtain donations for material, but any shortages she made up herself. She obtained grants for the school to bring and build a computer/music lab for the school to include musical instruments and numerous keyboards where she used them to provide a robust introduction to hands-on music performance and music appreciation.
As a middle school art teacher, she obtained a Tennessee Arts Commission grant to study in Salzburg, Vienna, and other “Arts” centers in Europe. Upon her return she not only shared her pictures with her students, but further incorporated the culture, style, and history into her curriculum to broaden the exposure and education of her students.
After retirement, Mrs. Sullivan was an avid artisan, pianist, and master quilter. She designed and made her own line of “soft dolls” known as Mary Bee dolls, which were selected as the official doll of the Clarksville bicentennial. She made porcelain dolls, and designed, and sewed the clothing for them. In addition, she made literally hundreds of quilts which she happily gave to her children, grandchildren, and the needy …through church and related charities. She was a devout Catholic and was active at Immaculate Conception church where she served in many of their ministries to help the elderly, and sick.
Her most enduring legacy is that she taught her children to love and serve the Lord, and our nation, the poor, needy, and animals. She would always stress kindness to all humans and creatures as they are all God’s creations. She instilled in them a strong work, and service ethic, and a solid foundation of stewardship for their families, friends, and communities.
Sykes Funeral Home in Clarksville is in charge of arrangements.
In lieu of flowers, Anitra would support donations to Benedictine Sisters, Sacred Heart Monastery, Cullman AL, or the National Right to Life.
Please visit Anitra's guestbook at www.sykesfuneralhome.com and share a memory with the family.
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