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Shirley Risburg Nelson

Obituary for Shirley Risburg Nelson

September 6, 1920 - April 17, 2018
Newark, Delaware | Age 97

Obituary

Shirley Marian Risburg Nelson (September 6, 1920) joined her beloved husband, David, in heaven on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 at the age of 97.

Shirley, a native of Detroit, Michigan, was a graduate of the University of Michigan. She and David met in kindergarten and married in March, 1943. As Dave pursued his football coaching career they traveled to Hillsdale College, Harvard University and the University of Maine. His acceptance of the position of Head Football Coach and Athletic Director at the University of Delaware in 1951 brought them to the Newark area.

Shirley lived her life to the fullest. Fall afternoons were devoted to University of Delaware football games. Win or lose, she always stayed until the end of the game out of respect for the coaches and players. She was a fabulous entertainer, hosting parties with ease, loved to plan day trips and outings for family and friends and treasured time on the Chesapeake Bay boating, fishing and crabbing. She was a Physical Education teacher, a Girl Scout troop leader, PTA member/officer and Meals-On-Wheels, Adopt-A-Highway and Ashland Nature Center volunteer. She was active in many University of Delaware organizations and was honored to be named the University of Delaware Women's Club's Woman of the Year in 2003. Most of all, Shirley was a loving and devoted wife, mother and adoring Grammy.

Special thanks to Vashti Jones, her live-in caregiver, whose love and care allowed her to stay in her own home and to the University of Delaware community for a lifetime of memories.

Shirley is survived by her daughter and son-in-law, Amy and Gary Connell; her son, Benn Nelson; her son and daughter-in-law, Eric and Dawn Nelson; and two grandchildren, Ashley and Brandon Connell. She was preceded in death by her husband, David Moir; parents, Fred A. and Hattie B. Risburg; and her beloved in-laws James and Elizabeth Dickey Nelson.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, July 21, 2018 at 11:00 am at the Bob Carpenter Center at the University of Delaware. Burial will be private at Head of Christiana Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the David M. and Shirley R. Nelson Athletic Scholarship at the University of Delaware, 83 E. Main Street, Newark, DE 19716.

Family Directed Memorial Service

Saturday, July 21
11:00 AM    3698059 3794690 20180721T110000

Bob Carpenter Center at the University of Delaware
631 S College Ave.
Newark, DE 19716

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  • In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the David M. and Shirley R. Nelson Athletic Scholarship at the University of Delaware, 83 E. Main Street, Newark, DE 19716.

Message from the Family

Life will not be the same without Mom but we are celebrating the long life she lived and are thankful for our time with her. Thank you all for your love and support. Amy and Gary, Benn, Eric and Dawn, and Ashley and Brandon. XOXO

Arrangements By

R.T. Foard & Jones, Inc.

122 W. Main Street
Newark, DE 19711
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