Lois Sanchez Callen

February 12, 1924October 14, 2020

Lois Corinne Sanchez Callen joined her Savior in glory, October 14, 2020.

Her life is a testimony to the salvation and mercy of Jesus Christ. This is expressed in the diligent way she used her 96 years loving and investing in her family and all who knew her.

Lois married Harmon Copeland Callen Jr. in 1946. Together they had three children, Harmon "Cal" Copeland Callen III, Leslie Lois Callen Edwards, and Kris Sanchez Callen.

Widowed young, she raised her children alone and instilled in them, a deep love for the Lord. She studied to become a teacher and went on to teach outdoor education and wilderness survival skills at Nature's Classroom for 28 years. Upon retirement, Lois continued her work as an educator, traveling around the U.S., holding nature camps in each of her grandchildren's home states.

She used her later years to explore and camp in 49 states with her best friend, Shirley Parker. Although her love for science, animals and the outdoors were evident, her real passion was the hearts of her students. She used her in-depth knowledge, fearless leadership, and adventurous spirit to not only teach about nature and the world we live in, but also the Creator who made it. Her deep relationship with Jesus Christ drove the way she worked, lived, and loved. This, paired with her innate humor, wit, and tenacity, earned the love, friendship, and respect of all who knew her. She was famous for her no-nonsense attitude, love for White Trout Lake, fearless snake handling, unending generosity, and trumpeting voice.

The strong matriarch of an ever growing family she led by example using all her skills to further the kingdom of God. She was happiest when her large family would cram into a living room we long outgrew and sing hymns and worship together.

She leaves behind a legacy of faith and love that will be carried on by her family. She is survived by her three children and their spouses, Cal and Janet Callen, Leslie and Dan Edwards, and Kris Callen along with 20 grandchildren, their spouses and 22 great-grandchildren.

There will be a memorial service for Lois this Monday, October 19, 2020 at White Trout Lake, 9905 Callen Drive, Tampa, FL 33618. In case of rain it will be at Christ Central Presbyterian Church, 6202 N. Himes Ave, Tampa, FL 33614.


No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.


Lois Sanchez Callen

have a memory or condolence to add?

Jim Ragsdale

October 18, 2020

I spent many days and sleepovers at Mrs. Callan's house on White Trout Lake with her son Kris. I will never forget how wonderful she was and the good times we had at Natures Classroom. What time is the memorial service on Monday? I need to see if I can get off work for a bit.

Jim Ragsdale

Jeanette Carpenter

October 17, 2020

Such sweet memories of visiting the lake house when we were in Tampa. At that time the lake seemed so far out of town. The bantering that my father made her endure and his endless teasing about spiders!
I so appreciate the summer I spent in Tampa that she picked me up each week to be able to participate with their church’s youth. That was definitely a highlight of that summer.
She was one of a kind and I look forward to seeing her in eternity!

Jennifer Moffett

October 16, 2020

I’ve never know of anyone calling her anything but “Gram”. That says so much. Adored by so many people. I especially enjoyed how she could dish it out to Cal, take what he had to dole out, and then turn around and have a great comeback. They could go on and on. Lots of laughs with those two together. Mourning and rejoicing with you all!

Charlotte Iverson

October 16, 2020

We loved Lois and her family. We always loved visiting them on our annual trip to Tampa. It was a highlight of those trips.
Years later when my own daughter was a baby, we took a trip to Tampa. Lois was sitting in the floor of my Grandparent's home with my daughter, Hannah, who was about 5 months old-- just starting to sit up-- & she was carrying on the conversation with the adults, but she said every word with enthusiasm, looking right in Hannah's eye as if she was talking to her alone!! It was the sweetest thing!
She was my Mother's best friend growing up. We grew up hearing stories about Lois.

Clydia Craig

October 16, 2020

She was one of a kind and very special. We camped with the Pioneer girls and one of the most precious memories was when she shared her testimony around the campfire one evening. If I remember correctly, it was Psalm 8 that God used to bring her to a saving faith.

“When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him? Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor. You have given him dominion over the works of your hands; you have put all things under his feet, all sheep and oxen, and also the beasts of the field, the birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea, whatever passes along the paths of the seas. O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!”
‭‭Psalm‬ ‭8:3-9‬ ‭ESV‬‬

it was so appropriate since she was happiest outdoors. She shared her love of nature and her great wisdom and we were all enriched. Rest In Peace dear one. See you when I get Home.

Leo Gray

October 16, 2020

My prayers are with you and your family. I spent the week after graduation in her home with some of the guys from Belhaven so many years ago. I never forgot her kind hospitality and the good time we had that week. Any time I drove through Tampa I would always think of her and the family. God Bless You Guys and May His Peace Be With You.

Mayu Guillen-Martinez

October 16, 2020

We met her during our first days at Laurel, MS. In summer 2007. In one of her science camp. Our kids and us did not speak English at all. But our 4 kids, at that time enjoyed to be with new friends, learning more about animals, and nature from Mrs. Lois Callen. It was a lovely and funny experienced for all of us.
We send our most sincere condolences to the whole Callen Family. We love you dear friends. Warm hugs from Mexico. The Martinez Family.

Ken Stap

October 16, 2020

Sympathies to all of the family - She was one of the few who believed what she believed and lived what she believed - I am so blessed that she was apart of my life for a season!!

Amelia Megginson

October 16, 2020

I still think of B and Camp Covenant every time I go hiking! She instilled a love and fascination for nature in so many lives, and I’ll always carry those memories of her with me. What a blessing!

Carolyn Walters

October 16, 2020

During one of B’s many outdoor camps, if anyone would ask, “will it bite me?” her response was , “Does it have a mouth?” This question she responded with was accompanied with “the look”. Loved her! Praying for all you.


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