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James R. Sadler, 98, of Rockville, MD, passed away peacefully on 23 July 2022 with family by his side. He was born in Cape Charles, VA, to Carroll James Sadler and Nannie Virginia Sadler on 1 December 1923. He is preceded in death by his parents, his brother Carroll Marshall Sadler, his first wife Larue Sadler (Hickok) in 1993, and his second wife Betty Anne Sadler (Younglove) in 2021. He is survived by his sons Frederick James Sadler (Barbara) of Catonsville, MD, and Brian Marshall Sadler (Laurel) of Laurel, MD, grandchildren Christopher (Dianna), Carolyn, Erica and Jillian, and great-grandchildren Benjamin and Daniel. He was also loved by his step-children Jan Lindsey (Ron), Joan Walker (David) and Stephen Younglove, 6 step-grandchildren and 6 step-great grandchildren.
He was a member of several churches throughout his life, notably Francis Asbury United Methodist Church, and Faith United Methodist Church, in Rockville, MD. He was a choir director for many years at Francis Asbury, serving alongside his wife and organist Larue Sadler.
He was a World War 2 veteran, serving in the First Cavalry Division (First Signal Troop). He turned 18 years of age just six days before the attack on Pearl Harbor (7 December 1941), and he spent 28 months in the Pacific Theatre, from initial deployment in Australia to the occupation of Tokyo, Japan. He was in combat across island nations including the Admiralty Islands and the Philippines, and participated in the liberation of Manila. He was in the amphibious landing on Leyte Island and was just down the beach in a radio vehicle when General Douglas MacArthur famously waded ashore on 20 October 1944 and declared “I have returned” to the people of the Philippines.
With support from the GI Bill, he graduated from the Shenandoah Conservatory of Music in Dayton, VA (moved to Winchester, VA in 1960), later obtaining two Masters Degrees, and then a PhD in Education at American University. Like many WW2 veterans, he was the first in his family to attend college. He retired from the Montgomery County Maryland Public School System after a career that included music educator (band) for all grade levels, Vice Principal, Principal, and County Program Director for the Chapter One / Title One program. The bulk of his career was aimed at helping the underprivileged. He was a gifted educator and introduced music into the lives of hundreds of students. He played every band instrument, and often created his own band arrangements for special occasions, one of which led to him directing a school band live on the Pick Temple TV show in Washington, DC, in the early 1950’s.
He founded and directed the Rockville Men’s Chorus, beginning in 1970 and continuing until the 2010’s. He penned numerous mens chorus arrangements, performing in a variety of venues including churches, schools (often together with student choirs), concerts, and retirement homes. They recorded an album entitled The Rockville Men’s Chorus sings of God and Country, with wife Larue (Accompanist) and son Fred (First Tenor). The group had many WW2 veterans, and one heartfelt program was entitled World War Two Melodies, often performed with Larue (piano) and son Brian (drums and vocals).
As a young man his dream was to be a drummer in the US Navy Band. Although this dream was never realized, the Rockville Mens Chorus performed with elements of the US Navy Sea Chanters vocal group (with special arrangements he created). He penned an original composition to the poem They Lie at Rest (C. Rossetti, 1858), in honor of the men and women lost during the attack on Pearl Harbor, and the chorus performed it many times including a Pearl Harbor Memorial Service at the Navy Chapel in Washington, DC, attended by survivors of the attack. Late in life he received a citation for military and civilian service and was granted the Honorary Rank of Musicians Mate First Class, United States Navy.
Friends and Relatives may visit Donaldson Funeral Home of Clarksville, P.A., 12540 Clarksville Pike, Clarksville, MD 21029, on Wednesday, August 3, 2022 for a Memorial Gathering from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM with a Memorial Service starting at 2:00 PM. To watch the live-streaming of this Memorial Service starting at 2:00 PM please click HERE.