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Ellis Ray Shelden


Ellis Ray Shelden, 85, of Marion, Iowa, departed this life on Saturday, Sept. 14, 2019. Visitation will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18, at Murdoch Funeral Home & Cremation Service in Marion. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 19, at the funeral home. Inurnment will take place at a later date.
Ray was born in Beaconsfield, Iowa, on
Jan. 20, 1934, to Guy Brian Shelden and Alma Gladys (Dady) Shelden. He graduated from Mount Ayr Community High School in May of 1952. Since Ray had been a member of the U.S. Navy Reserves, he went immediately after graduation to the Great Lakes Training Center. After graduating from Dental Corpsman training, Ray was shipped to Parris Island, S.C., where he was attached to the U.S. Army Marine Corps. On June 14, 1953, he was united in marriage to Helen Blanche Combs in Mount Ayr. After Ray was discharged from the Navy, he returned to Mount Ayr, and the couple moved to Iowa City, Iowa, where Ray graduated from the University of Iowa School of Pharmacy in February of 1959. That year, the couple moved to Marion, Iowa, where he began working for Edison Pharmacy. Ray later purchased the pharmacy and was a businessman for the next 16 years, at which time he became an inspector for the Iowa Board of Pharmacy for the next 20 years. Ray retired in 2000. He continued to attend and keep his pharmacy license through the Linn County Pharmacy Association and other sources of continuing education classes. Ray was active in Iowa Pharmacy Association, Linn County Pharmacy Association and the Mason's Chapter 548 of Marion.
Ray's passions in life were his family, where he took great pleasure in his grandchildren and great-grandchildren, his golf, having belonged to the Indian Creek Country Club for many years, his canine companion, Sammy, and the Iowa Hawkeyes. While in high school, he also was an avid baseball player, playing shortstop for the Veterans team of Mount Ayr. Ray had great feelings and friendships for the many patients who depended upon his advice and service to them from the pharmacy. He was a great people person, also enjoying the games of bridge and gin with his pals. On every weekday morning, he was at coffee at Hy-Vee enjoying much conversation with fellow buddies.
He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Helen; his daughters, Andrea (John) Schindler of Marion and Caprice (Walter) Rich of Amana, Iowa; three beloved grandchildren, Meghan (Jerry) Yurchisin of Alexandria, Va., Bailey (Jon) Steffen of Dunkerton, Iowa, and Dalton Schindler of Marion; three great-grandchildren, Belle, Scarlett and Landon Steffen; four stepgrandchildren, Lucus Pitcher, MaKenzie, Hayden and Jaxson Randall, and their mother; stepgranddaughter, Lisa Randall; and many nieces and nephews.
Ray was preceded in death by his parents, Alma and Guy Shelden; sister, Alice Mae (Defenbaugh) Keplinger; brother, Avery Guy Shelden; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Arnold and Lorene Combs; sister-in-law, Marilyn Giles; and brother-in-law, John Combs.
Memorials in Ray's memory may be directed to the American Heart Association at 1035 N. Center Point Road No. B, Hiawatha, IA 52233 or the Cedar Valley Humane Society at 7411 Mount Vernon Rd. SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403.
Please share a memory of Ray at www.murdochfuneralhome.com under obituaries.
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