Shirley J. Eskelund

July 6, 1928October 10, 2017

SHIRLEY JEDELE ESKELUND 1928 - 2017 WINSLOW: Shirley Jedele Eskelund, 89, passed away peacefully at home on October 10, 2017. She was born on July 6, 1928 in New York City, the daughter of Ruth (Hastings) and Earl Jedele. Shirley graduated from University High School in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1947. She continued her education at Michigan State University (MSU) and in 1951 earned a Bachelors Degree in Journalism. While at MSU Shirley met Kenneth H. Eskelund and on March 19, 1950, they married in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Shirley and Ken moved to Waterville in 1953 where she focused on raising her family of three boys. She became active in many local organizations and served as the chairman of the Interim Dept. of the Waterville Women's Club for several years. She served on the board of United Way of Mid-Maine and the Sunset Home. Shirley was a constant friend, supporter and volunteer for the Maine Children's Home for Little Wanderers for over 50 years. She served various capacities including one term as President of the Friends. She served 6 terms of office on the Board of Directors between 1976 and 2007. She was much recognized for her service to these organizations. Especially meaningful for her was recognition by the Maine Children's Home, both with a tea at the Governor's mansion as well as the naming of their conference center on their Silver Street Campus as the Eskelund Center. She also opened her home to local organizations and hosted fund-raising functions for many charitable groups.

When her family was mostly grown, Shirley went to work at Waterville Junior High School Library as Assistant Librarian. She enjoyed her work with Librarian Ann Benbow and stayed for 15 years. She also worked for several years for Maine Biological Laboratories in Winslow.

Shirley was an outstanding cook and loved entertaining and hosted many dinner, cocktail, and holiday parties. She enjoyed art in all forms and became an accomplished Watercolor Painter. Shirley hosted a weekly painting group at her Schoolhouse Studio in Winslow for many years. Shirley truly loved her summers at the family camp on Snow Pond in Oakland. She was an avid swimmer, swimming regularly in the lake, at Colby College in the winters, and then in her much cherished pool at her home in Winslow. Shirley loved to travel. She & Ken vacationed in several destinations in Europe, including Majorca, Spain, Austria, and Sweden, as well as in Hawaii, and Japan. She especially treasured the Family Ski Vacations to Austria and Colorado. For over 25 years, she and Ken traveled to their Timeshare Condominium, Westwind II on Cable Beach, Nassau, Bahamas where they made many lifelong friends.

Shirley was predeceased by her loving husband Dr. Kenneth H Eskelund of Winslow. She is survived by her son David Eskelund and his wife Cindy Grabinski of Gray, by her son Donald Eskelund and his partner Heidi Jacobs of Winslow, and by her son Richard Eskelund and his wife Carol Paradis of Sidney.

The family would like to offer their thanks to dedicated care givers who came to love Shirley and who made it possible for her to live out her life in her own home.

A memorial service will be held at 1:00 PM on Wednesday, October 18 at the First Congregational Church, 7 Eustis Parkway, Waterville. A gathering for friends and family will follow the service at the function hall of the church. Please visit to share condolences, memories, and tributes with her family.

In lieu of flowers, donations should be made to the Shirley Eskelund memorial fund for the Maine Children's Home for Little Wanderers, 93 Silver Street, Waterville, ME 04901-5923



  • Memorial Service Wednesday, October 18, 2017


  • Reception - Church Hall

Shirley J. Eskelund

have a memory or condolence to add?

Karen Bateman

October 17, 2017

Shirley is my aunt - and though we live far apart, she's always been a part of my life. She did so much for so many people, had such a great sense of humor, was so down-to-earth, so capable in so many things. I'll miss her but she'll remain in my heart.

October 16, 2017

We met Shirley and Ken when we were neighbors in Waterville. We have great memories of time spent with them, eating out and taking day trips around Maine. It was always fun to be in their company. They were a great couple. They are missed. It was a privilege to have known them. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.
Elaine and Bob Harriman


October 14, 2017


October 14, 2017

My sympathies to Shirley's family. May wonderful memories comfort you at this time.
Claire Leclair, Sidney, Me

Debra Silva

October 14, 2017

My heartfelt condolences to Shirley's family. Shirley was a very kind, thoughtful, and talented woman. Her generous nature made a positive difference in the lives of so many others.

dot bickford

October 14, 2017

I will miss you so much shirl.