Shirley Bradley Ceely
1926 - 2021
Ceely, Shirley Bradley 6/4/1926 - 6/6/2021 Ann Arbor, MI Shirley Bradley Ceely of Ann Arbor died peacefully on June 6, surrounded by her family, in Danvers, MA, two days after her 95th birthday. Shirley was born in Montreal, but spent her childhood in North Adams, MA, graduating from Drury High School in 1944. She graduated from Wellesley College in 1948, where she majored in French. In 1950, she married Richard (Dick) G. Ceely, her lifelong partner until 2010, when Mr. Ceely died. Together they raised three children: David, of Mechanicsburg, PA; Janet Langer, of Gloucester MA; and James (Jim), of Ann Arbor, MI. In addition to their children, she is survived by four grandchildren and one nephew. Shirley and Dick spent their early married life in the Berkshires in western Massachusetts, where Shirley was active in The League of Women Voters, focusing on responsible water management. They moved to Minnesota in 1966, and then to Ann Arbor in 1969, where she lived until just this past April. In 1972, she and Dick opened Parkman Printing, a small, boutique shop that they sold to their son Jim nineteen years later. They then bought a 36-foot sailboat, and lived aboard for the next five years. These were precious times for them, travelling between the Bahamas in the winter and New England for summers. During her fifty-two years in Ann Arbor, Shirley was a member of the League of Women Voters, the Ann Arbor Wellesley Club, the Huron River Watershed Council, and most notably, the Ann Arbor Bike Touring Society (AABTS) soon after it was founded. An active participant well into her 80's, she served a term as its president and logged 31,804 miles riding with the bike club. Through its numerous events, the AABTS afforded Shirley the opportunity to enjoy being outside, explore the beautiful states of Michigan, Kentucky, and Texas, and form lasting friendships that endured for the rest of her life. A lifelong learner, Shirley was a voracious reader, Scrabble player, and crossword puzzle enthusiast, displaying an impressive knowledge of topics from Shakespeare to Greek mythology to English history. She made several trips to Europe with Dick, attended theater performances in Stratford and at the Shaw Festival in Canada, enjoyed performances by the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra, and enrolled in seminars at Elderwise Learning. Above all else, Shirley believed in the inherent worth and dignity of every person. She had a mischievous sense of humor, a stubborn independence, and a gentle, enduring love for those closest to her. She was a force for good. Funeral arrangements are private. A celebration of Shirley's life will take place in Ann Arbor at a future date.
Published by Ann Arbor News from Jun. 15 to Jun. 17, 2021.
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7 Entries
Our condolences to David Ceely, a friend from many years ago. We're sorry to read about your mom's passing. Would like to hear from you.
Take Care,
Jeff Schonder and Anne Marie McDougall, South Lyon, MI
Jeff Schonder
June 18, 2021
Ah....dear neighbor for a time and then always friend! I was blessed to know her and her presence in my life (and my daughter's) was so affirming at a time that was pretty raw. We drew on her resilience and I enjoyed many a chat in her condo's living room, on the deck, outside in our mutual garden area about all sorts of erata. She gave me her bicycle pump after her knees precluded continued riding and we shared many a cup of tea during our jovial banter that always leaned into philosophical topics. I treasure my memories of her and the template of what she showed me about how to age in place and well. My deep condolences to her family during this time of loss. She will be missed greatly. Love, light & healing, Mary
Mary Spence
June 17, 2021
My deepest condolences to you and your family as you mourn the loss of your mom. My thoughts and prayers are with you.
Mike Wilson
June 16, 2021
I'm so sorry to hear of Shirley's passing though I know she had a full and wonderful life. I'm glad that I had a chance to have lunch with Jim recently and share some thoughts about his mom. Regardless of age it's always hard to lose a parent so my thoughts go out to David, Jimmy and Janet.

Bela Sipos
June 16, 2021
I am so saddened to hear the news of Mrs. Ceely. She was a longtime member of the Saline Rec Center. She was an inspiration as a 90 year older woman who swam and exercised regularly. I hope to be as active as she was as I grow older. I can still see Mrs. Ceely and Mrs. Tu sitting in the lobby. After swimming, they would share a grapefruit and Mrs. Tu would teach Mrs. Ceely about Chinese history, culture and language. She was a bright light. The staff at the Saline Rec Center send condolences.
Carla Scruggs
June 16, 2021
Dear Jim & Family, I have fond memories of always being greeted warmly as I entered Parkman Printing by Shirley while Jim was checking in with mom and dad during our high school years. A couple years later, I couldn't think of better resource other than Shirley to assist me in type-setting my old time resume and in the creating wedding invitations. She was patient and her guidance was greatly appreciated. I'm so glad to read that your Shirley and Dick were able to experience their retirement goal of sailing the world, and that Shirley was able to pursue her interest throughout her life. It's quite impressive to read of all her accomplishments and achievements, but I also remember the beautiful loaves of bread that she baked. My heart are thoughts are with you all during this difficult time.
Jack Barry
June 15, 2021
I can’t even start to say how much I will miss Shirley! There wasn’t a time when I cut her hair that I didn’t learn something new from her. She was so intelligent and not to mention the sweetest woman I’ve ever met! I am so blessed to have known her . ❤
Cindy Aguirre
June 15, 2021
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