Shirley Jean Hochstetler Cox died at 1:30 a.m. on April 21, 2020, at the age of 67 from complications of a six-year battle with cancer. She was born on Jan. 6, 1953, to Jesse and Wilma Hochstetler of Nappanee, and lived the majority of her life here in Transylvania County.
In 1975, Shirley graduated from Messiah College in Pennsylvania and then married the love of her life. She and Jim lived the Navy life for a number of years, then moved to North Carolina in 1982. Working with children was her passion which led her to work with “A Child’s World” for many years, after which she volunteered with Smart Start and poured her heart into the children and staff at the Boys and Girls Club of Transylvania County. She was a long-term member of Zion Baptist Church where she also played the piano. She lived her life loving and serving others, and was happiest when she was able to make anyone’s day a little better.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her firstborn Eric Cox who died at birth, and several other friends and family members. She is survived by so many including her loving husband of 45 years, Jim Cox and her daughter, Rebecca Cox as well as five siblings and their families; Paul Hochstetler and his husband Randy Colburn, Esther Burdette and her three children and their families, Lamar Hochstetler and his wife LeAnn along with their two children and their families, Wayne Hochstetler and his wife Marilyn and their three children and families, and Darrel Hochstetler and his wife Dianne and their four children and their families. She is also survived by her aunt Inez Helmuth in Nappanee,. Many more who continue to carry on Shirley’s memory are not listed, but they are not forgotten. She will be missed beyond measure.
A private burial service took place on April 23, and a memorial service will be held at a later date to celebrate and commemorate her life.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Cindy Platt Boys and Girls Club of Transylvania County at Shirley’s request.