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Milton W. Sanderson

December 18, 2012
Lewistown Sentinel

LEWISTOWN - Milton W. Sanderson, 102, of 829 Dry Valley Road, Lewistown, passed away on Dec. 12, 2012, at his home.

Born July 29, 1910, in Pittsburg, Kan., he was a son of the late Flora May (McKinley) Sanderson and William Calvin Sanderson.

He is survived by his wife, Carol A. (Bingman) Sanderson, whom he married on Sept. 26, 1993.

Article Photos

Milton W. Sanderson

Also surviving are: his son, Steven C. Sanderson and wife, Jenny Bloom; stepchildren, Michele M. Smith and Christopher D. Clemens; granddaughter, Kathy Rassette and husband, Matt; great-grandchildren, Rachel and Rian Rassette; three nieces; and four nephews.

He was preceded in death by: one son, Joe Sanderson; two brothers, Johnny Sanderson and Wayne Sanderson; and one sister, Helen (Sanderson) Schenck.

Milton received a Ph.D in entomology at the University of Kansas. Prior to graduation, he taught entomology for two summers at Lake Michigan, for the University of Michigan. After graduation, he worked as an assistant professor of entomology at the University of Arkansas. In 1942, he became a professor of entomology at the Illinois State Natural History Survey, where he worked for 35 years.

He had scholastic and honorary memberships in Alpha Phi Omega, Phi Sigma and Sigma Xi. In his lifetime, he authored nearly 100 papers and seven books. A colleague and close friend, Dr. Robert Woodruff, dedicated a book to Milton, saying, "It is with great pleasure that we dedicate this volume to Dr. Milton W. Sanderson, Dean of North American Phyllophaga specialists, for over 50 years."

Post-retirement, as a Professor Emeritus at Northern Arizona University, he and a colleague completed studies of Montezuma Well.

After moving to Lincoln, N.M., he changed his focus to botany and published a paper on the wildflowers of the Capitan Mountains, which he presented to the New Mexico State University at Alamogordo.

Upon moving to Pennsylvania in 1993, he continued his botanical studies. With the assistance of his wife, Carol, he focused his attention on the wildflowers of central Pennsylvania, and sent the results to the Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania. The Sandersons also published two editions of "A Guide to Common Pennsylvania Wildflowers."

In Pennsylvania, he belonged to the Pennsylvania Native Plant Society and the Towpath Naturalist Society.

According to his wishes, there will be no services.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American Red Cross, for the victims of Hurricane Sandy.

Heller-Hoenstine Funeral Homes Inc., Woodlawn, 200 N. Main St., Lewistown, was in charge of arrangements.

Online condolences may be made by visiting



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