Mrs. Shirley J. Shelton, age 80 of Bethpage, TN, passed away Monday, June 3, 2019.
Funeral Services for Mrs. Shelton will be conducted on Thursday, June 6, 2019 at 11:00 AM from Woodard Funeral Home with Bro. Wert Campbell officiating. Interment will follow in Sumner Memorial Gardens.
The family will receive visitors on Wednesday, June 5, 2019 from 1:00 PM to 8:00 PM, and on Thursday, June 6, 2019 from 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM at Woodard Funeral Home.
Ms. Shirley Johnston Shelton was born and raised in Martinsville, Virginia on July 11, 1938.
She was preceded in death by her parents Noel Thomas Johnston and Mary Francis Huff Johnston Her husband, Raymond Allen Shelton Her Brothers, Woodrow, Clarence, and Junior Johnston.
Her grandfather, 5 generations back, was the bodyguard to General George Washington. The Virginia family property was deeded to him for his service to his country. Her family attended Pentecostal Holiness Church in Mountain Valley where Shirley was saved. Allen was saved in his early twenties and together they began their walk serving the Lord.
After marrying Allen in 1957, and him being in the music business, they lived in Virginia were Drew and Timberly were born. They then moved to Georgia, Alabama where Todd and Robin were born. From there they moved to Tennessee, Louisiana, and then back to Tennessee in 1975. While the children were in school Ms. Shirley was the room mother and in later years would come and read to students and pop home grown popcorn for them. When living in Louisiana, she and Allen assisted in fund raising and planning to help launch the new site for West Saint Charles Baptist church in Boutte.
She did the first back yard Bible school in the community of Paradie for the catholic children on her carport because the local priest would not let them use the church. These back yard Bible clubs lasted 2 weeks. She taught kids in Sunday school and VBS from birth to 6th grade for 42 years. Many of these years her own children were in her Sunday school classes.
She went on mission trips to Venezuela and Knoxville. She worked with the Baptist Student Union to feed lunch at VSCC for 28 years. She was part of the original launch of the Toy Store and worked in the Toy Store baby area for 20 years until it was discontinued. In her later years she began doing the Operation Christmas Child Shoe box ministry by Franklin Graham. She slowly built up the number of boxes she made up to 20 each Christmas. She said that she was doing one in honor of each of her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren each year.
She loved God’s creation and loved to have a garden and flower beds. She shared liberally from her bounty and would can and preserve food. She could always whip up something to eat. She always had Thanksgiving and Christmas at her house and the children would all come in and share in those meals together. She taught all of her children the importance of faith in the Lord, giving to others, and taking care of what you were blessed with.
Mrs.Shelton is survived by her:
Daughters - Drew (Lee) Porter, Timberly (Richard) Denning
and Robin (Larry) Summers
Son - Todd (Nancy) Shelton
Brother - Otis Johnston
Sister - Pauline Walker
Grand Children - Lane (Christen) Summers, McKenzie (Robert) Schmidt, Patrick (Bridgett) Summers, Chase (Monica) Porter, Taryn Porter, Rebecca Shelton, Randa (Michael) Pelz, Torie Summers, Bethany Shelton, Hannah Shelton and Nathan Shelton
Great Grand Children - Brooke Porter, Analise Schmidt, Abby Porter, Corban Schmidt and Charlee Porter
The family suggests in lieu of flowers that memorial donations be made to The Gideons or Samaritan's Purse.