In Memory of





Obituary for Mary Ann Shirley (Deans)

Mary Ann Deans Shirley born June 27th 1951 in Tobey Hospital in Wareham, Massachusetts passed peacefully on February 10th 2022 in Chambersburg Hospital in Pennsylvania due to complications resulting from post-covid pneumonia and a long-term battle with lymphoma. She was preceded by her mother Catherine Patricia Lynch Deans and Robert Francis Deans, her aunt Anne Lynch Koster and uncle Elias “Al” Koster that cared for her after her parents’ passing. She is survived by her husband of forty-three years Bill and her sons Dean and Robert; her siblings, Bob, Dave, and Kay; seven nieces and nephews; and eleven grandnieces and grandnephews.

Personally, Mary was a devoted wife to her husband Bill. She loyally followed him and his career and it took the family to multiple states up and down the east coast. She also kept the home fires burning while he spent time overseas multiple times. At this same time she raised two children from young boys into young men who embodied her kind spirit in their own lives and careers in education, public service, and pursuit of their own entrepreneurial ambitions as photographers.

Professionally, she was a career nurse maintaining her license as a Registered Nurse with a Certification in Emergency Nursing until her passing. Locally she worked at Carlisle Hospital, Chambersburg Hospital, and then retired from Etter Health Center at Shippensburg University. She was also a volunteer nurse at Hidden Valley Scout Reservation in Loysville, PA and Camp Krislund (PCUSA) in Madisonburg, PA. She was also an on-call consult for many friends and family over the years sharing her medical expertise to anyone who needed it. The love, joy, and kindness she brought with her into work gave hope to thousands of people during their darkest days over the decades of her career.

Outside of work and family, Mary was a fierce friend whether you knew her for five minutes or fifty years. As a wilily Scrabble player she would make you fight for every point. She was also an ice cream aficionado, a blue ribbon award winning apple pie baker, and a lover of all things Snoopy. Additionally she was former president of the Shippensburg Aquatic Club and the founder of the Shippensburg Learn to Swim Program.

In light of her passing her family has two requests. First, get your shots. As a career nurse she understood all too well the importance of vaccines and the role they play in keeping people like her with compromised immune systems safe as well as keeping the healthy healthy. Please do everything you can to mitigate the suffering our family and so many others have experienced and get your shots. Secondly, in lieu of flowers, please make donations in her memory to the Neonatal Care Unit at Harrisburg Hospital UPMC. She regularly made blankets for that unit so donations may be monetary or physical based on the current needs of the unit.

Funeral services will be held Thursday, March 10, 2022 at 2 p.m. in the Fogelsanger-Bricker Funeral Home & Crematorium, Shippensburg. Pastor Gary Hornbaker will officiate. Burial will be held privately in the Indiantown Gap National Cemetery. A viewing will be held one hour prior to the services in the funeral home.

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