Sara Odelle Spann Thames, 86, widow of Willie Thames, departed this life on Sunday, August 2, 2020, at her residence. She was born in Pinewood (Clarendon County) on November 1, 1933, daughter of the late Harrison Spann, Sr. and Ella Nora Johnson Spann. At a very young age she joined New Hope Union Methodist Episcopal Church, Pinewood. She later connected with Kingdom Builders Deliverance Ministries. She was saved and served as a devout Christian, soft spoken and always with empathy. Odelle was educated in the public schools of Claendon and Richland Counties with a degree in Early Childhood Education from Frances Marion University, Florence. She was broadly read and expanded her knowledge throughout her life, which included 32 years education in Sumter School District 17 and 21 years with the Sumter County Disabilities and Special Needs Board. Community service was central to the life of Odelle, with contributions to many to enumerate. She gave generously of her time to a broad range of organization in her second hometown of Sumter and the community. She created special interest groups in her community as well as surrounding communities and their lives became more informative and productive. She was always a team player and never took “NO” for an answer. Every child was a beacon of life in her presence. Children of the neighborhood was always family seated at her dinner table at mealtime. She served wherever needed in the ministries of her church, including the usher board in her early years, Senior Missionary Ministry, The Kingdom Builders Deliverance Ministries Executive Board, The Steward Board Ministries, President of Mission of Kindness, The Church Anniversary Committee and a faithful Sunday School and Bible Study Student. She was also a member for many years of the Golden Girls Club. She leaves to cherish her memories: two sons, Willie Thames, Jr. of Sumter and Clayton Thames of Tampa, FL; two daughters, Winifred D. Thames (Albert) Brown, Pamela Q. (Dennis) McFadden of Sumter; one sister, Louise (Lucius) Ragin; fifteen grandchildren; twenty-three great-grandchildren; one sister-in-law, Gladys Thames; and a host of nieces, nephews, god children, other relatives and friends. The family is receiving relatives and friends at the home of her daughter, 20 Victory Drive, Sumter. Graveside services will be held at 11:00 a. m., Friday, August 7, 2020 at Kingdom Memorial Park, Highway 15 South, Sumter, with Bishop Leroy T. James, pastor of Kingdom Builders Deliverance Ministries, officiating. Procession will leave from the home of her daughter at 10:10 a. m.
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