Idaho State Journal & Idaho Statesman, 11/15/12
GARDEN CITY — Beloved mother and accomplished professional woman, Shirley Lou Stephens Wheatley died in her home November 13. During a vigorous life she married her prince, raised five children, earned a master’s degree and led state and private agencies in an era before women balanced such tasks. Her presence is missed, while her celestial adventure begins.
Born September 7, 1927, in Montpelier, and raised in Bear Lake County, her parents, John Edwin Stephens and Louisa Perkins Stephens, watched with pride as she graduated from Montpelier High School, then Utah State University and later, the University of Utah School of Social Work, with an LCSW degree. Shirley joined Sigma Kappa Sorority, Spurs and Lambda Delta Sigma and won the outstanding student scholarship of the University of Utah.
After teaching English, speech and psychology at Driggs High School, she assumed a social work career with Family and Children Services for Weber County, Utah.
Again she won the prize, as Shirley married her supervisor, Spencer Baty Wheatley on May 8, 1953, followed by solemnization in Salt Lake LDS Temple in 1954. Five children were born to the couple: Julie Craven (Dave) of Eureka, California, Nancy Leroy (David) and Stephen Wheatley of Boise, Susan Maynes (Todd) of St. Charles, Illinois, and Janet Chen (Steve) of Draper, Utah. She raised her family well.
Contemporaneously, applying her degrees and aptitude, Shirley became coordinator of adoptions and interstate placement supervisor for the state of Idaho. She found new families for hundreds of needful children in a career that spanned 23 years. Upon her retirement, Shirley and Spencer licensed and opened a private adoption agency, Children Adoption Services of Idaho (CSAI), which still operates today.
She also found time and relished holding many callings within her several Wards of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Funeral services will be held for Shirley at the Northview Chapel of the LDS Church located at West 6711 Northview Street, Boise, on Friday, November 16, 2012, at the hour of 11 a.m. A visitation will be held from 10 to 10:45 a.m., prior to the funeral.
Services are under the direction of Bowman Funeral Parlor.
Sending Shirley off from here to eternal distinction above, are all five of her children, as well as eight grandchildren, namely: Tiffany Schrenk, Virginia, Spencer, Grant Maynes, Quinn Wheatley, Christen Chen, Blake Kami, and Clark Kami. A single greatgrandchild, Liam Schrenk, made Shirley happy these last four months.
She rejoins not only her parents, but all eight of her siblings, sister, Ruth (Nielsen), and brothers, La-Grande, Earl, Dean, Charles, Sterling, Glenn, and Roger, completing the Stephens circle. She also reunites with a Godly man, her prince, Spencer Baty Wheatley.
“Louie” was a wonderful woman of many achievements, stylish in dress and regal in bearing, loving, trusting and friendly, who leaves us with many tears, yet many smiles, for her warm, full life.