Sheila Jane Ahrensdorf
July 5, 1923 – January 9, 2021
Sheila Ahrensdorf, born July 5th, 1923, died January 9th, 2021
Sheila Ahrensdorf was born in England, to Reginald, architect, and Gwendolen. Sheila had two older sisters who both pre-deceased her some years ago.
At 17 years of age when WWII broke out Sheila was assigned to a secret underground facility. Her job was verifying specifications of parts for the manufacture of prototype war planes. She later worked for the telephone company on the switchboard. Soldiers, sailors and airmen calling their loved ones often expressed surprise and delight when their strict five minute allotted talk time ran into eight or even ten minutes - courtesy of operators like Sheila whose hearts were moved listening to the plight of these poor individuals who may be talking to their family for the very last time.
In 1951, Sheila married William and in 1952, her only child, Christopher, was born. In 1974, William was killed in an auto accident. A year later Sheila met Robert at a party in London, they fell in love, were married the following year and moved to Robert’s home in Manhattan, NY. “Robbie”, as she called him, had two children from a previous marriage, Wendy and Roc.
Sheila always had a great love of animals and living on a farm in the west of England afforded. her lots of space. In 1965 she bought a dachshund and named her Gigi (after the brown eyed Leslie Caron movie of the same name) and loved to go for long walks down the country lanes and across fields with Gigi and Christopher. In fact, animals and walking were Sheila’s great passions and she did it whenever she could. After her move to Manhattan and living close to Central Park, Sheila would pass many horse-drawn carriages on her walks. Woe betide any carriage driver who chose to be cruel to his horse when Sheila was nearby as she had no fear of repercussions while fiercely giving the perpetrator a sharp piece of her mind.
Christopher married Eileen in 1984 and together they have five children - Michael, Stephanie, Christina, Danielle and Rita. Michael married Ann and has a son, Ace, and lives in Mississippi. Christina has two children with Roger - RJ and Rylee-Eileen and lives in New York. Stephanie married Christopher and lives in New York. Roc married Victoria and had two children, Eli and Grace. Wendy married Tom and lives in Washington. In January 2010 Robbie died of Alzheimer’s complications. Later, in June, his son, Roc, was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer and also died in August that same year.
In 2016 Sheila moved from Manhattan to FL along with her son, Christopher, to escape the long Manhattan winters which kept her housebound in her 27th floor apartment. Sheila had always loved the sun and warm climates so she could now enjoy much longer summers and much shorter winters. She also loved to travel having visited many exotic locations around the world with her husband, Robbie, both on business and for pleasure.
In 2017 Sheila was diagnosed with Advanced Stages of Alzheimers’. Despite being physically sound and a woman of strong character and resolve, the disease finally overcame her and on Saturday, January 9th 2021, she passed away in her sleep at home with her son and daughter-in-law nearby. Sheila left behind many wonderful and true friends, a son, a daughter-in-law, seven grandchildren and three great grandchildren.
A memorial service for Sheila will be held at Oaklawn Funeral Home, 619 N. New Warrington Road, Pensacola, FL 32506 on Saturday February 6th at 11a.m. EST (10a.m. CST.) It will be broadcast live on the internet for those who wish to join in at that time. The service will also be archived and available for later viewing for those who would like to participate but cannot “attend” the live broadcast. A link will be posted on the funeral home web site, www.dignitymemorial.com for Sheila’s service.
Oak Lawn Funeral Home