Shirley (Ellis) Pettyjohn (1935 - 2015)

17 entries
  • "Dearest Family, I am sorry over your loss. At such a time..."
  • "Deena, my dear friend, and Denise, my heart aches for your..."
    - Melanie Howard
  • "Mr. Pettyjohn, Denise and Deena, I'm so very sorry for your..."
    - Dianna Duncan Rogers
  • "May God's healing love bring you peace and strength, and..."
    - Peggy McBeath Kinsell
  • "Jesus tells us what death is like at John 11:13."
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Shirley Ellis Pettyjohn, 79, passed away unexpectedly while in Punta Gorda, Fla. on June 6, 2015.
Shirley was born on August 16, 1935 in Liberty, Casey County, Ky. She was preceded in death by her parents, Wesley Barker and Ada Bryant Ellis; her sister, Virginia Ellis Charles Cook; and infant daughter, Sherry Denise.
Left to cherish her memory is the love of her life, her husband of 59 years, Flem D. Pettyjohn; daughters, Deena R. Pettyjohn and Ellisa Denise Drexler (Henry); grandchildren, Wesley Ariel Pettyjohn and Michael Drexler (Elisha), great-granddaughter, Abbegail Drexler; and niece, Patricia Charles Hawkinson. She will be missed by her granddog, Doolittle.
Shirley was a woman ahead of her time. After graduating from UofL with her Bachelor of Science in 1974 and from UofL School of Law in 1977, she became one of only 2 percent of female attorneys in the U.S. While attending UofL, she was a charter member of the Professional Business Sorority, Phi Chi Theta, the first Business Fraternity for Women at UofL. She was the first female ever accepted into Sigma Delta Kappa International Law Fraternity, the oldest law fraternity at the UofL School of Law, later becoming the first female national officer and first female life member.
She was involved in numerous business, social and civic organizations, serving as President of the following: Women's Chamber of Commerce of Ky; Women Lawyers Assoc. of Jefferson County; Council of Women Presidents; and The Arts Club of Louisville. She was a member of the National Assoc. of Administrative Law Judges and a Kentucky Colonel. Her honors and accomplishments are far too numerous to list.
Shirley was the first woman appointed to the Louisville and Jefferson County Planning Commission and first woman to ever be elected to serve as Vice-Chairman on that Commission. She was proud to be paving the way for women who would follow in her footsteps.
Shirley held her real estate broker's license in Kentucky and Indiana, was the president and owner of Pettyjohn, Inc. Real Estate and operated a private law practice in both Kentucky and Indiana. She was a Hearing Officer for the Kentucky Board of Claims, Natural Resources & Environmental Protection Cabinet and Ky. Occupational Safety & Health Commission.
She was loved by all who knew her and is remembered as a strong, hard-working lady, a loving wife and mother and a loyal friend. She enjoyed writing, music, art, piano, spending time with her family and traveling. Shirley was an intelligent woman with a beautiful spirit that motivated and inspired others. She will remain in our hearts forever.
A private gathering of her family was held in Punta Gorda, Fla. Per her wishes, cremation was chosen.
There will be a Celebration of Shirley's Life on Friday, August 7, 2015 from 5-9 p.m. at Woodhaven Country Club, 7200 Woodhaven Road, Louisville, Ky. 40291.
Please join us as we share memories of her extraordinary life.
Published in The Casey County News on Aug. 5, 2015