Chelsa Helen Fitzgerald Shigley

Thursday , March 06, 2014 - 9:05 AM

Contributed, Obituaries

BRIGHAM CITY - Chelsa Helen Fitzgerald Shigley, passed awayon Sunday, December 1, 2013 at her home in Brigham City, Utah,just two and a half months after Ted, her husband of 72 years.

She was born on September 2, 1920 at East St. Louis, Illinois toCharles Edward and Helen Koeller Fitzgerald. Her father was aveteran of World War I and anelectrician who worked in themining industry and had his ownbusiness. They lived in severallocations including East St. Louis,Winkle and Belleville, Illinois,where Chelsa attended the localschools graduating from BellevilleTownship High School inSt. Clair County in June 1937.She attended Business Collegeand became an excellentclerk-stenographer working atseveral locations, prior to beingemployed at Scott Field, Illinois.

She worked there until her familymoved to Dayton, Ohio, where she was employed at Wright Field inthe technical services branch. A highlight of her service there wasmeeting the famous Colonel Jimmy Doolittle and typing a letter forhim.Chelsa attended ground school training for a private Pilot'slicense at the Dayton Power and Light Building in Dayton. At the topof her class she was awarded several hours of flight training as theresult of her premium grades.

There she met her future husband, Ted Shigley. Following awhirlwind romance they were married on Saturday, September 20,1941 in the Yellow Springs, Ohio Presbyterian church by theReverend Howard Lee.They lived in Yellow Springs during the December 7th attack onPearl Harbor after which Ted went to work at Wright Field. In April1942, they moved to Mobile, Alabama to work at Brookley Field.

Chelsa worked in the personnel department until she retired in 1955to raise her family. She became a member of the Government StreetMethodist Church in Mobile until they built a new home inEdgewood Park and transferred their membership to Fulton HeightsMethodist Church. In Edgewood Park she was one of the leaders ofthe Civic Club. She and her husband were instrumental in foundingthe Dauphin Island Parkway Branch of the Mobile Public Library.In 1965, when Brookley Air Force Base was scheduled forclosing, they moved to Utah where Ted worked at Hill Air ForceBase. They moved west with their three sons, leaving their twomarried daughters in Alabama. Settling in Brigham City, the familyjoined Aldersgate United Methodist Church, where Chelsa servedmany offices including Chairperson of Trustees, President to UnitedMethodist Women, Financial Secretary and on several boards andcommittees.

She raised her three sons and guided them throughschool while maintaining her home and following a hobby of ceramicart, creating dozens of beautiful ceramic pieces. Chelsa sewedclothes for her family and embroidered many beautiful decorativepieces. She also loved raising flowers with roses being her favorite.She served as a DeMolay Mother and as a volunteer for the Acts VISoup Kitchen.She and Ted traveled extensively throughout the United Statesincluding, Alaska and Hawaii, in addition to Canada, Mexico,Europe, China, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Australia, Korea and Fiji.

She is survived by her children, Lynne Richardson ofTuscaloosa, AL ; Sandra Oxley of Mobile, AL; Charles R. (Kathy) ofSandy, Utah; Dr. John K. (Dr. Sally) of Ogden, Utah; Ted Jr. (Amy)of Edmonds, WA; Grandsons, Bill Torres of New York City, ChrisRichardson (Meg) of Birmingham, AL; Jason Shigley (Mandi) ofMidvale, Utah and Joseph (Alisha) of West Jordan, Utah.Granddaughters, Cindy (Eric) Kirkland of Tuscaloosa, AL andHannah and Sarah Shigley of Ogden, Utah. Great Grandchildren,Caroline and Ellis George Kirkland of Tuscaloosa, AL and Noah,Arianna, Ashton, Jayden, Landon and Mia of Utah.Chelsa was preceded in death by her parents, grandparents, husband, Ted and Grandson Jonathan Shigley.

The family requests that in lieu of flowers donations be made inChelsa's name to Best Friends Pet Sanctuary, PO Box 315, Kanab,Utah 84741-0315 or Acts VI Soup Kitchen in Brigham City, Utah.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday, December 7, 2013 at2 p.m. at Aldersgate United Methodist Church, 235 East 850 South,Brigham City, Utah.Visitation will be held on Friday, December 6, 2013 from 6 to 8p.m. at Gillies Funeral Chapel, 634 East 200 South, Brigham City,Utah.Interment will be in the Brigham City Cemetery.

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