Shirley Ann Dilley, a resident of Miller’s Merry Manor, Syracuse, passed away at 1:54 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 15, 2021, at Goshen Hospital at the age of 85.
She was born on May 9, 1935, in Peoria, Ill., to Grace (Duckworth) Shelton Barker and John Shelton. In her teens, Shirley got a job at White Castle where she particularly enjoyed working with one particular boy named Raymond.
They fell in love at the young age of 16. She was married on Dec. 14, 1951, to Raymond Junior Dilley. They raised seven children and shared more than 60 years of marriage together before he passed away on May 21, 2014.
Throughout her life, she always worked at various places depending on where they happened to be living. She provided for her family by working in the accounting department at a bank in Indianapolis, at different department stores when their family lived in Lafayette and at ESI in Nappanee.
Her lifetime favorite job was simply being “Mom.” Raising seven children turned her into a great cook. Shirley could always make something out of nothing! She enjoyed singing and bowling, and of course loved her square-dancing. Shirley didn’t have a church home but was very spiritual and held a deep faith for her Lord. She dearly loved her family and will be dearly missed by all.
She leaves behind three sons, Gary Dilley, Englewood, Fla., Dean (wife Beth) Dilley, Lafayette, and Tim Dilley; three daughters, Arlene Bechtold and husband Robert McMahan, Englewood, Fla., Lynn Dilley, Syracuse, and Grace Bee, Syracuse; 23 grandchildren; 27 great-grandchildren; and five great-great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents; husband; daughter Penny Leigh Griffin; two grandsons; and a granddaughter.
Shirley will be laid to rest at Oakwood Cemetery in Warsaw and her life will be celebrated at a later date with a private family service. Arrangements were entrusted to Redpath-Fruth Funeral Home, 225 Argonne Road, Warsaw.
Memorial donations in Shirley’s memory may be directed to the Alzheimer’s Association, Greater Indiana Chapter, 50 E. 91st St., Suite 100, Indianapolis, IN 46240, or to the Animal Welfare League of Kosciusko County, 1048 S. 325 E., Pierceton, IN 46562.