Shirley Kennedy, of Tyler, left this world to join her beloved husband on Sept. 12, 2013.
Born Jan, 15, 1938, to Major Milton and Jewell Hesser in San Antonio, she travelled the world as an "Army brat." She graduated from Gallatin High School in '56. She met and married the love of her life, Keith Kennedy, when she went to work at Rusk State Hospital. Where they met has been a source of amusement for the whole family.
While residing in Rusk, Shirley and Keith had two daughters, Vicky and Toni. When Keith was called to serve his country, Shirley started traveling again as an "Army wife." Their son, Jason, was born in Honolulu, Hawaii. A few more moves later the young family settled in McAllen, there Shirley graduated from Pan American University and began teaching.
In 1975, Shirley and family settled in Tyler. She earned her Master's Degree at the University of Texas at Tyler. She taught first grade at Cain Elementary in Whitehouse for two decades. Her incredible gifts for teaching, love of her students, imagination, great costumes and lovely red hair made many whose lives she touched believe she was Ms. Frizzle and her Magic School Bus come to life.
Always having a traveling bug, she spent summers traveling with Keith until he fell ill. Shirley nursed him at home until he passed away in 2000. In 2002, Shirley retired and enjoyed travelling, reading, shopping, attending the theater and playing mahjong with her family and friends.
Every summer her grandkids looked forward to "Mimi's Cousin's Camp." She loved kids and kids loved her! We are so fortunate to have had her in our lives. She made life a grand adventure.
She leaves to cherish her memories, her loving family, her daughter, Vicky Kennedy; her granddaughters, Sabrina Malone and Tabitha and husband Mauro Sanchez and their children, Jayden, Jordan and Jacob; and grandson, David Malone; daughter, Toni and husband Mark Teel, her granddaughters, Kennedy, Kynndal and Ashleigh Teel and her children, Breydin and Sophia, and her grandson, Keith Teel; her son, Jason Kennedy; her sister, Mary Rodriguez; and sister-in-law, Helen Tunnell, as well as numerous loved ones.
In honor of her memory, do today what Shirley loved best: Spend time with and cherish the ones you love. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Broach Foundation of Brain Cancer Research.
A celebration of her life will be held on Sunday, Sept. 22. 2013, at 15143 Camp Tyler Road, Whitehouse, starting at 1 p.m. Please come by and share your memories with us.
Published in Tyler Morning Telegraph on Sept. 15, 2013