427 E MAIN
Abingdon, VA 24210-3407
(276) 623-2700
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Shirley Newell Wilson

1931 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Shirley Newell Wilson Obituary
Shirley Newell Wilson

AGE: 86 • Wilmington

Shirley Newell Wilson, age 86, passed away peacefully on July 14, 2017. She was born on April 23,1931, in San Francisco, to Fayette Burks Newell and Jesse Albert Newell. After graduating from the University of California at Berkeley with a degree in Zoology, she met and married the love of her life, Leonard B. Wilson, Jr. in August of 1958. While raising two boys in Wilmington, Delaware, Shirley cultivated her natural artistic talents to become a highly regarded sculptor, painter and pianist, with her popular owl sculptures adorning homes throughout Delaware, Maryland, and Southern Pennsylvania. Her volunteer activities included teaching reading and writing to female inmates for the Delaware Department of Corrections.

We must also mention that Shirley was the greatest swim team mom EVER, and is responsible for her sons' lifelong love of competitive swimming and watersports.

Later in life, she and Len were avid travelers, making trips to Egypt, East Africa, South America, China and Borneo, with special interest in archeological sites and eco-tourism.

Retiring to St. Petersburg, Florida, Shirley enjoyed volunteering with Eckerd College, delving into creative writing projects and sketching the many species of birds of Florida in her sketch books.

She was a proud 66-year member of the Alpha Chi Omega sorority.

At the time of her passing, she was listening to her beloved Chopin's Nocturne in E-flat major, Op. 9, No. 2, an elegant piano piece featuring a beautiful melody floating over a waltzing left-hand accompaniment.

Shirley is survived by her husband of 58 years, Leonard B. Wilson, Jr. of Abingdon, Virginia; sons, Kriss (Karen) of Richmond, Virginia and Scott (Judy) of Abingdon, Virginia; along with grandchildren, Austin, Jack, Christie, Hunter and Rutger.

Now she swirls brightly amongst the stars.

Shirley's family hopes that you will do an unexpected and unsolicited act of kindness for some poor, unfortunate soul in her name.

Those wishing to express sympathy online may do so by visiting and signing the online guestbook. The family of Shirley Newell Wilson is being cared for by Farris Funeral Service and Crematory, 427 E. Main St., Abingdon, Va. 24210 (276-623-2700).
Published in The News Journal on July 16, 2017
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