Shirley Kelton WESTMINSTER, Vt. — Shirley Kelton, 95, passed away on Tuesday, June 25, 2019. Shirley was born to Allan George Randall and Mable Drusilla Pitkin in Proctorsville on Nov. 27, 1923. She grew up in Saxtons River and graduated from Bellows Falls High School. On Oct. 17, 1943, Shirley married Carl Edwin Kelton. They were married for 72 years. They had four children, Alfred, Leslie, Bodie and Vernon. Shirley loved life and there is no doubt that she lived it to the fullest. She found time to enjoy and experience all the things that interested her. When she was younger, she was a talented dancer and Charlie’s lack of dancing or two left feet didn’t stop her. Shirley also had a love of music and singing. She was in a number of choruses and church choirs and has been said to have “had a voice like Doris Day.” By the time Shirley had her youngest child, Vernon, in Lebanon, New Hampshire, the young couple and their family were living in White River Junction. In the Upper Valley, she raised her children and they began raising their own families. Al and Carol had Little Leslie and the twins, Thane and Justin. Leslie had Sarah and the first round of grandchildren were here. These lucky ducks were able to experience Grandma Shirley’s legendary Shierleyness first hand. Shirley loved to travel and meet people. She didn’t have to be on an international trip, though she enjoyed trips to Europe and Asia. She was just as happy to visit her home on Hills Beach, Maine. If there were 99 ways to get to Maine, Shirley knew 101. And what trip wouldn’t be complete without a slight detour where you ran out of gas and/or locked the keys in the car. Shirley had a way with animals that stretched beyond a love for them. They knew she loved and respected them. They were always drawn to her. When Bodie and Vernon had the second round of grandchildren, Carl, Lizzie, Caleb and Mallary, they grew up with Shirley’s parrot, Scotties and Westies. This set of grandchildren also got enchanting rides in the car, some to Maine and others to Aunt Joan and Uncle Norm’s house in Grafton. Their pond was something of a fantasy, out in a meadow with a swing made of telephone poles and a ramp to make sure you could get as high and far out as possible. Gram made sure we got out there and feared nothing. Shirley and Charlie also made many trips to Clark's Trading Post in Lincoln, New Hampshire. Even as children we all knew and can still agree the destination didn’t matter to Shirley, she was all about the journey. She loved a ride and loved meeting new people. She always saw the best in everyone she met and gave them her best. Later in life when they moved down to Westminster, Shirley opened the Motel Westminster. There, she flourished, as she demonstrated her incredible work ethic running, cleaning and caring for her 16-room motel. She absolutely loved it. Meeting new people from all over the world every day, it just made her day. It has been said that during this time, Shirley really shined. It may have been the independence of her business, or just the years or experience and wisdom. Shirley was a wonderful woman and everyone who knew her is truly blessed. Shirley had a way of lighting up a room and bringing out the best in everyone. Anyone who was touched by Shirley recognized her immense love for life and the people in it. She is survived by her sister M. Drusilla Kuschka of Massachusetts; her children, Alfred M. Kelton of Wilder, Carl E. “Bodie” Kelton Jr. and wife Kimberly of White River Junction and Vernon C. Kelton and Doreen E. Kelton of Westminster; her sister-in law Joan K. Lake of Grafton, and son-in-law Tim Wells of Westminster; eight grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. She was predeceased by her parents; and her brothers, Allen “Buddy” Randall and William “Bill” Randall; her daughter Leslie J. (Kelton) Wells; and her daughter-in-law Carol Kelton of Wilder. There will be a graveside service at 12 p.m. Saturday, July 6, in the Houghtonville Cemetery, Grafton. Following the service, there will be a gathering at the Grafton Chapel.

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