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Lillian Shah

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Lillian Shah Obituary
Lillian Shah

AGE: 82 • Wilmington, Delaware

Lillian died peacefully in her home on March 18, 2017 at the age of 82.

She was the youngest of nine children born to Everett and June Gullett in Lucasville, Ohio; she was preceded in death by Opal, Zeke, Dorie, Robert, Helen, Aggie, Sherman, and Eldon. Her older siblings were Lillian's first heroes; she deeply admired their selflessness in supporting the family during the Great Depression, and their participation in the WWII war effort. Lillian graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1954 where she participated in every sport, play, or club that was offered; as a junior she was inducted into the National Honor Society. Lillian attended Otterbein College in Ohio and the University of Delaware; over the years and in her unique approach to education, Lillian attained a Masters Degree from Goddard College and then was awarded Bachelors from the University of Delaware. She was the first person in her family to earn a college degree.

In 1963, Lillian met the love of her life Atul, playing table tennis at the Newark YMCA. Though their backgrounds could not have been more disparate, they shared an intellectual curiosity and love of family that knew no bounds. They were true life partners for 50 years and supported each other's endeavors 110%. In 1972, Lillian co-founded the Elementary Workshop at 5th and Pine Streets, with her life-long friend Penny Contractor. For the next 28 years, on a shoestring budget and with a wonderful and dedicated teaching staff, Lillian worked tirelessly to provide a vibrant and nurturing educational environment where all children could reach their highest potential. She embraced the Montessori philosophy of education and was a strong and vocal advocate for all children.

After retirement, Lillian co-authored Keeping Healthy by Keeping Track with her friend Laura Messinger, and lectured for several years. Also, she and Atul took fabulous trips abroad, visited with relatives, and made a beautiful home for themselves. Together they patronized many local artists and counted them among their dearest friends.

Lillian is survived by her daughters Julie and Melora, their husbands Dan McNeil and CP Lucas, and the apples of her eye, her grandsons Dan Kumar and Phillip.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests a donation to a charity who serves children.

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Published in The News Journal from Mar. 24 to Mar. 26, 2017
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