Shirley George Pendell

September 18, 1914June 14, 2020

Mary Shirley George Pendell, 105, peacefully joined her beloved husband in Heaven on June 14, 2020, in Naples, FL.

She was born September 18th, 1914 in Verona, New York to Dr. John Dean George and Maude (Eggleston) George. She had five brothers, one of whom died as a toddler and four who followed in their father’s footsteps and became doctors. Shirley graduated from St. Lawrence University with an English major and Library Science degree, and also played four years of college varsity basketball. While attending post-graduate classes at Syracuse University, she met the love of her life, Richard Pendell, and they married in 1936.

Richard and Shirley first made their home in Norwich, New York, where they both taught school; however, while her husband fought overseas in WW II, Shirley returned to Verona with their two children, Barbara, and Richard, Jr. Post-war, the family moved to Michigan where Richard worked for The Dow Chemical Company and the family’s third child, David, was born.

In 1953, Richard and Shirley formed Ford Press Inc. in Midland, MI (later named Pendell Printing) until their retirement in the late 1970’s. Shirley juggled many roles while working alongside her husband: in addition to mother & homemaker, she managed all aspects of customer service, and was the best office manager the company ever had. She was instrumental in the company’s growth as it became one of the largest printing companies in Michigan. She was a true and perfect partner in both her marriage and the business world.

Shirley was also always very involved with community activities and especially with the Memorial Presbyterian Church in Midland, along with the Presbyterian Church in Stuart, FL where she and Richard retired in later years.

Education was of utmost importance to Shirley and her husband and together, they promoted the Community Education concept both nationally and internationally as they travelled the globe together. They were awarded many honors for their years of selfless service to this cause, and for the countless numbers of people they helped along the way.

Both playing and spectating sports was a big part of Shirley’s life as she played golf well into her 90’s and attended countless Michigan State football games. She had one MAJOR whistle that could get the attention of anyone in attendance!

But truly the most important thing in Shirley’s life, above all, was her family. She was happiest when her children came to visit; you were ALWAYS welcome under her roof, where she provided unconditional love without judgment, and was a source of inspiration to everyone in the family. Her aura of grace, gratitude, and humor enveloped family and friends alike.

One of her favorite places on earth was at the camp her father built at Sylvia Lake, a small but beautiful spot in the Adirondacks of New York. It was a haven for her and Richard to visit each summer with their children, and long after Shirley’s parents died, it became the place for Barbara, Richard Jr. and David to come with their families and their children….and the legacy continued.

After Shirley moved to Naples, FL in 2013, she celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded by much of her family. A highlight was the receipt of a signed basketball from the St. Lawrence University women’s team.

Shirley leaves her three children, Barbara Pendell Kulkis (Lance), Richard (Karen) Pendell Jr., and David (Vicky) Pendell; ten grandchildren; seventeen great grandchildren; and two great-great-grandchildren. Most important, she leaves with all of us a legacy of boundless love for family, having lived a life of grace and gratitude. She is a perfect role model for the generations following. Truly, she has reached the end of a long road, very well-travelled.


No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.


Shirley George Pendell

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