Mary Louise Smith Shelley

Mary Louise Smith Shelley was born on July 16, 1928 in Ada, Kansas, to the late Frederick and Anna Jaske Smith. She departed this earthly life on July 22, 2015 in West Plains, Missouri, at the age of 87 years, following a lengthy illness.

At a young age, Mary and her family moved from Kansas and settled in Cabool, Missouri. She attended and graduated from the Cabool school district. She soon met the love of her life, Wilburn Lee Shelley, and they were married on October 25, 1949. They were blessed with 65 wonderful years together and their love for each other was unconditional. To this union seven children were born: David, Larry, Connie, Linda, Rita, Kathy and Debbie.

Mary was a longtime member of St. Michael Catholic Church in Cabool. She had the voice of an angel and would always uplift her voice to the Lord.

Mary worked various jobs throughout the area including Lee Company in Houston, Todd’s Motel in Cabool and even operating a small café on Main Street. Her greatest love was her grandchildren and she would always have their favorite pie, cake, and other loved dessert they requested when they came to visit.

Mary also had a passion for reading, sewing and quilting, but due to failing eyesight these were soon put aside. She never let the loss of eyesight diminish her love for life; she was a fighter.

Mary was preceded in death by her parents, Fred and Anna; brothers, Raymond, Leonard, Ernest, Lloyd, Francis and Bob; sisters, Mildred, Agnes, Avis and Christina; and three children, David, Larry and Connie.

She is survived by her husband of 65 years, Lee of Cabool; daughters, Linda and husband Kenneth Baker of Huggins, Missouri, Rita and husband Paul Preece of Cabool, Kathy and husband Bud Manning of Mtn. Grove, Missouri, and Debbie and husband Gary Schiewetz of Mtn. Home, Arkansas; two special daughters-in-law, Beverly Shelley of Cabool and Sherry Shelley of Pittsburgh, Kansas; grandchildren, Wayne (Mandy) Shelley, Chris (Tara) Emery, Jeremy (Crystal) Emery, and Jason (Brandy) Emery, all of Mtn. Grove, Paul (Sara) Shelley of Springfield, Mike (Rhonda) Shelley of Crane, Missouri, Tyson (Dawnelle) Shelley and Russell Shelley of Pittsburgh, Kansas, Jaron (Sarah) Shelley of Mtn. Home, Arkansas, Shelley (Kirby) Kelly of Manes, Missouri, Kristina Baker of Huggins, Brian Preece of Cabool, and Junior and Angela Morgan; 36 great-grandchildren; and a host of relatives and friends who will miss her dearly.

Funeral Mass was held at 2:00 p.m. Saturday, July 25, 2015, at St. Michael Catholic Church in Cabool with Father Paul Wightman and Deacon Joe Kurtenbach officiating. Inurnment will be in Cabool Cemetery at a later date. Services were under the direction of Elliott-Gentry-Carder Funeral Home of Cabool. Online condolences may be made at

In lieu of flowers the family has requested donations be made to Cabool Senior Center.

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