Cover photo for Gretchen Sandling Dillard's Obituary
Gretchen Sandling Dillard Profile Photo
1972 Gretchen 2021

Gretchen Sandling Dillard

March 8, 1972 — February 7, 2021

Gretchen Leigh (Sandling) Dillard, 48 years old, died Sunday,  February 7, 2021
surrounded by her family and in her childhood home. The cause of death
was due to complications of stage 4 colon cancer. She was deeply loved
by her large, extended family and a wide circle of friends from Chicago to
Mobile who will miss her dearly. Gretchen was born in Perryville, Missouri
on March 8, 1972 to Butch (Gary) and Wanda Sandling, the second of their
three children. As a child, she was often found outside playing with her
brother and neighborhood kids for hours on end. She was a real tomboy,
who never believed for a second she could not do everything any boy could
do and do it better. And often that is exactly what she did.

Determination and endurance were two qualities Gretchen possessed in
abundance from her youth. Despite the challenges of her childhood asthma,
Gretchen was a cross country runner, played basketball and softball. She was
a 1990 graduate of Fulton City High School, was a Fulton Bulldog fan and a TN
Vols fan. She did nothing by half-measures. She threw herself into whatever
she was doing. Her work ethic carried her through two changes of university.
She graduated in 1995 from Columbia College in Chicago after moving there
to take a summer job that turned into her source of support while in school.
She lived and worked in Chicago for more than twenty years, a city she loved.
She was an enthusiastic supporter of the Bears and the Cubs. She moved back
to Fulton to be closer to her family and it was there that she met the love of her life,
John Dillard. They married in July 2018. It was only nine months later that she
received the cancer diagnosis that would be the greatest fight of her life, a fight
she fought with all the determination and courage you would expect of her. She
enjoyed cooking and The Food Network.  She was a member of the First Baptist Church.

She is survived by her husband, John Dillard, her parents, a brother Gary
Sandling, Jr. (Shelia Glennon) of Williamsburg, VA and a sister Gina Sandling
Jones (Jordan) of Fulton, KY; a step daughter Kylann Dillard of Houston, TX,
nephews Jacob Sandling of Williamsburg, VA and Joshua Jones of Fulton, KY;
nieces Maeve Sandling of Williamsburg, VA, Evie Jones of Fulton, KY and
Catie Cook of Clarksville, TN and a sister in law and brother in law.

Funeral service will be held at 12 noon on Friday at the First Baptist Church and
burial will follow in the Gardner Cemetery. Visitation will be at the church from 10 am
until the funeral hour. Due to Covid 19, those attending are asked to wear masks and practice social distancing. 

Memorials may be made to the First Baptist Church - P.O. Box 1140, Fulton, KY 42041, Ken-Tenn EMS - 105 Nolan Ave., Fulton, KY 42041              or to Fulton City Boys Varsity Basketball - Attention: Kim Farmer, Board of Education, 304 West State Line, Fulton, KY 42041.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Gretchen Sandling Dillard, please visit our flower store.


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