Ruth M. Shelton

December 15, 1930 - September 25, 2015
Vicksburg, MI



Thursday, October 1, 2015
4:00 PM to 7:00 PM EDT
Life Story Funeral Homes - Rupert, Durham, Marshall & Gren
Vicksburg Location
409 South Main Street
Vicksburg, MI 49097
(269) 649-1697
Driving Directions


Friday, October 2, 2015
11:00 AM EDT
Vicksburg Bible Church
11988 S. Sprinkle Road
Vicksburg, MI 49097
(269) 649-1156
Web Site


At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.

Hospice Care of Southwest Michigan
222 N. Kalamazoo Mall, Ste. 100
Kalamazoo, MI 49007
(269) 345-0273
Driving Directions
Web Site


Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.

Heirloom Rose
407 S. Grand St.
Schoolcraft, MI 49087
(269) 679-3010
Driving Directions
Web Site

Wedel's Nursery Florist & Garden Center
5020 Texas Drive
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
(269) 345-1195
Driving Directions

Life Story / Obituary


With a life that spanned times of war and times of peace, times of plenty and times of want, Ruth Shelton lived her life to nurture, care for, and love her family first and foremost. It was easy to see that her life was rooted in something different, something deeper, and that something was her unwavering faith. Ruth was a loving wife and devoted mother, but there was nothing that made her heart swell with pride more than becoming a grandmother, great-grandmother, and great-great-grandmother to the younger generations whom she adored. Although her life was not without times of trial, she faced everything that came her way head on, weathering the storms with both grace and courage. Life will never be the same without Ruth here, but her timeless legacy will be proudly carried on by those who follow in her footsteps.

Although the 1920s were highly prosperous times, the 1930s were a much different story as the Great Depression held our nation and much of the world firmly in its grip throughout the entire decade. Jobs were scarce and the unemployment rate soared, but the American spirit remained as we still celebrated the completion of both the Chrysler Building and the Empire State Building among other noteworthy accomplishments. It was just as this decade was dawning that Curtis and Mabel (Dunn) Shelley were eagerly awaiting the birth of their new baby as winter held the city of Three Rivers, Michigan, firmly in its grip in December of 1930. The big day finally arrived on December 15th when the baby girl they named Ruth Marie drew her first breath with the assistance of the midwife on the family farm.

The fourth of five children, Ruth was raised in a close family where her siblings were her primary playmates. She enjoyed spending time together doing things like skating and sledding in the winter. When she was thirteen years old, Ruth and her family moved to the small town of Schoolcraft.

After graduating from Schoolcraft High School, Ruth worked as a waitress at a local restaurant. It was there that she met the young man of her dreams. His name was Richard Shelton, and after waiting on him a few times he mustered the courage to ask her out. Ruth accepted, and a dating relationship was formed. With a desire to establish a life together, they were married on July 1, 1949. As a young newlywed, Ruth spent some time working at Kalamazoo Paper Company.

A bit later, Ruth and Dick began welcoming children into their hearts and home. Together they raised five children, Kathy, Cheryl, Rick, Steve, and Christine. Ruth was a devoted mother who raised her children with a quiet faith, attending the Vicksburg United Methodist Church. She loved cooking for her family, and she always had homemade cookies filling up her cookie jar. Later on, Ruth regularly prepared a large Sunday dinner where all were expected to be as long as they were able. Her door was always open, and there was always more than enough food to go around. If anyone stopped by, they were always sure to be greeted with a warm smile and a fresh cookie, if desired.

In addition to caring for her family, Ruth kept busy in other ways. Her faith and her church home were always of the utmost importance, and later in life she began attending the Vicksburg Bible Church for as long as her health allowed. With a love for the outdoors, Ruth could often be found gardening around home. She also enjoyed camping and was known to go deer hunting with Dick just so she could be outside. She loved fishing on their pond and in the local lakes. For several years, Ruth and Dick wintered in Florida. They were always very close to Ruth’s cousin, Alberta and her husband Mel, and although they were cousins they were more like best friends. Much of their time in Florida was spent together, often playing cards. Ruth especially enjoyed playing euchre. She loved music especially church hymns and country western music which leant itself to many memories square dancing with Dick.

She was a woman of routine who enjoyed drinking Pepsi and eating an ice cream bar every night. If she was at a party or a special occasion, Ruth did enjoy a cold Bud Light. She also enjoyed hummingbirds and kept more than busy crocheting afghans for her children and grandchildren. After her husband’s death in 2013, Ruth held even more tightly to her faith and her family.

All who knew Ruth Shelton would agree that she was an extraordinary woman to know and love. She was never one to worry about the things of this world rather her focus was on loving others without condition. Ruth was faith filled and a woman of great character whose genuine personality drew others near with ease. Deeply loved, she will be forever missed.

Ruth M. Shelton, of Vicksburg, died on September 25, 2015. Ruth’s family includes her children, Kathy (John) Nelson, Cheryl (Ron) Maillard, Richard (Terri) Shelton, Steven (Lois) Shelton and Christine Shelton; 17 grandchildren; 30 great-grandchildren; 12 great-great-grandchildren, sisters, Betty (Erv) Borsum and Marian (Ralph) Wine as well as many other relatives. Ruth was preceded in death by her husband, Dick; grandchildren, Jeffrey Harger and Diane Kingsbury; and her brothers, Arnold & Ernest Shelley. Visit with Ruth’s family on Thursday, October 1st from 4:00-7:00 p.m. at Life Story Funeral Homes, Vicksburg; 409 S. Main St. (649-1697). A funeral service will be held on Friday, October 2nd at 11:00 a.m. at Vicksburg Bible Church; 11988 S. Sprinkle Rd, Vicksburg. Visit Ruth’s memory page at www.lifestorynet.com where you can sign her guestbook. Memorial donations may be made to Hospice Care of Southwest Michigan.