Esther L. Shelton

Date of Birth

Jan 24,1920

Date of Death

May 21,2011

ESTHER L. SHETLON, age 91, of Canton, IL, formerly of Aurora, Metropolis and Elburn, IL, passed away Saturday, May 21, 2011 at Heartland Healthcare in Canton, IL. BORN: She was born January 24, 1920 on the Downing farm in Virgil, IL, the daughter of Swedish immigrants, Carl E. and Clara (Magnusson) Swanson. EARLY YEARS:Esther grew up in Virgil and attended local schools. She graduated from St. Charles High School at age 16 in 1936.EDUCATION: She continued her education by completing her nurses training at Copley Memorial Hospital where she worked before serving in the United States Army Nurse Corp. From October of 1942 to August of 1943, Esther served her country at Fort Sam Houston and Brook General in San Antonio, TX before taking her talents to Army-Navy General in Hot Springs, AR until her honorable discharge as a 1st Lieutenant in December of 1945. MARRIAGE: She was united in marriage to John L. Shelton on March 31, 1943 in San Antonio, TX. They made a million memories for 44 years until his passing on July 11, 1987. OCCUPATION / WORK HISTORY:Esther was born with a heart made for caring and she continued that legacy as a Head Nurse on the fourth floor of Copley Memorial Hospital in Aurora from 1950 to 1970. Following her "retirement" in 1970, Esther and John purchased a farm near Metropolis, IL, but while John worked the land, Esther answered the call for caring when she began working at Massac Memorial Hospital in Metropolis as well as a local nursing home before really retiring in 1985. In 1989 Esther moved to Elburn to live with her brother and sister. MEMBERSHIPS: She was a faithful member of Grace Lutheran Church in both Lily Lake and Canton, IL. She was also a member of the Copley Nurses Alumni Association and the American Legion Auxiliary in Elburn. LIFE NOTES: Esther heart was always giving and her hands were never idle. When she wasn’t caring for others she kept busy knitting sweaters and blankets for family, friends and church bazaars, working crossword puzzles, playing Solitaire and dominoes. She loved to cook and was renowned for her spaghetti as well as her red velvet Cake. She also brought her garden to life with all the vibrant colors Mother Nature could provide. In quiet moments, Esther could travel to distant lands as she turned to pages of her favorite books. Those quiet moments could be shattered however when her beloved Chicago Cubs were playing. There was no bigger fan than Esther. Her legacy as a loving Aunt and a friend to many will be remembered for many years and generations to come. SURVIVORS: She is survived by two nieces:Sharyn ( Dr. John) Baker of Moline, IL and Sandra (Dan) Ihnes of Canton, IL;One great-niece, 3 great-nephews, two great-great nieces, two great-great nephews and a family of friends. PRECEDED:She is preceded in death by her parents;Two brothers:Hilding and Carl Swanson;Four sisters:Ethel Swanson,Ruth Swanson, Mildred (Leland) Taber and Alice (Roy) Pinegar.VISITATION / FUNERAL Visitation will be from 11 a.m. to noon with a funeral service to celebrate her life to follow the visitation on Wednesday, May 25, 2011, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn, IL 60119. Rev. Ernst Rex, pastor of Grace Lutheran Church in Lily Lake, will officiate and interment will follow at Blackberry Township Cemetery, Elburn. MEMORIAL In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in her name to benefit her favorite churches, Grace Lutheran Church in both Lily Lake and Canton, IL. Checks may be made to the "Esther Shelton Memorial" and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address or on the web at

Visitation will be Wednesday May 25, 2011 from 11:am to 12:00 noon with a service to celebrate her life to follow visitation at Conley Funeral Home 116 W. Pierece St., Elburn, Il. Rev. Ernst Rex, pastor of Grace Lutheran Church in Virgil, will officate.

Interment will follow at Blackberry Township Cemetery, Elburn, Il

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