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Garlene Corley Shelton
March 10, 1957 ~ January 3, 2024 (age 66) 66 Years Old
Rather than endure the Californication of her beloved Texas for one moment longer, Garlene Corley Shelton traded in her traitorous lungs for eternal wings on January 3, 2024 after a brief but courageous battle with COPD, Emphysema, and Pulmonary Hypertension. Those who knew her best said she went out as she liked to live, high and the center of attention.
Garlene’s untimely illness was the result of a life well and fully lived. Born 10 March 1957 in Waco, TX, her childhood was filled with profound love and devastating loss. At a young age she was entered into a Cinderella Story of her own and was forced to learn strength through incredible misfortune and did so with a most alluring smile and contagious laugh. Garlene as a true child of the sixties, dabbled, indulged, and partied her way through the seventies and eighties developing an affinity for Marlboros and the okayest of whiskies.
Her fierce independence and timeless beauty caught the eye of many-a-man, none of whom worthy of her until she met her very own Prince Charming–Walter “Wally” Shelton. She was immediately drawn to his overwhelming strength, dedicated work ethic, and protective nature, and Wally was enchanted by Garlene’s independence, adventurous nature, rockin’ bod, and killer blue eyes.
On June 14, 1997, the two were married in a quaint, backyard wedding–where it all began. On this day, Garlene not only got her Prince Charming but something she had nearly given up on finding–a family to call her own. Upon marrying Wally, Garlene gained three bonus children to call her own, Shana, Katy, and Cole. Being able to finally call herself a wife, mother, and eventually grandmother was, in itself, her happily ever after.
Garlene settled into domesticity by becoming the Pumpkin Roll Queen who sipped her Crown, Royally. A self proclaimed “junkie,” she was a budget denier whose passing will single handedly depreciate Estate Sales across Eastern Texas. Garlene was a collector of memories– hers and others. She could often be found lurking in the past whether it be exploring estate sales, hanging with John Wayne, or reading historical fiction.
Her other hobbies included pranking friends and family, spending time with her grandkids, and traveling the world in search of the best fried shrimp and plain cheeseburgers– turns out it isn’t in Colorado, Hawaii, Florida, Germany, or Portugal, but at Hook, Line, and Sinker in Dallas, Texas.
This batty, feisty, judgy, silly, mess of an old woman will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved her. Thank you, Mom, MeMaw, Mawshe, Garlene for your humor, candor, honesty, and joy.
Thank you for brightening all the light we cannot see.
Garlene Corley Shelton was preceded in death by her father, Garland Corley, her mother, Jean Ann Hopkins, and her brother, John Corley. She is survived by her husband, Walter E. Shelton, son, Walter Cole Shelton, daughter (in law) Jordan Shelton, daughters Shana and Katy Shelton, grandchildren, Jamie, Bailey, Rainey, Casey, Archer, and Aisla, her brother Robert Corley and his wife Teri Corley, and sister, Dyann Kelly, lifelong friend, Marsha Firmin, as well as numerous family and friends.