Service and Visitation for Joan Shelly on Jan. 4

 01/02/2017 - 13:49

Joan Marie Shelly, formerly of Saline, passed away at the age of 83 on Tuesday, December 27, 2016 at the American House Senior Living Facility in Grand Rapids.


Joan was born in Ypsilanti, MI, the daughter of Earl and Mary (Renton) Willoughby. After graduating from IU in Indiana in 1955, she got married to Nicolas Mihailoff-Shelly in in the spring of 1955 and she traveled the world together until her first born, Peter Boyd was born in Vienna, Austria in 1964. Then as they began to settle in the U.S. her daughter, Larissa Nicole was born in 1966 in Elkhart, Ind., then along came her baby boy, Andrew Bruce.

She was a fabulous and wonderful housewife and mom who loved to take care of her family. She worked at Stretch-n-Sew in Mishawaka, Ind. as a store manager.  She was a marvelous and exceptionally talented seamstress. There was nothing she couldn't make or put together. She made beautiful clothing for her kids and grandkids growing up.

She then moved to Ann Arbor to start a new life for herself with her family in 1983. She enjoyed a wonderful job with MR-Mathematical Reviews with U of M for the next 20 years.  In 1988, she moved out to the city of Saline and enjoyed a wonderful condo where she could plant her flowers and watch her grandkids swim in the pool in the summer when they came to visit. She lived there until 2013. From there she moved to Grand Rapids to be closer to her daughter and her grandkids.

She loved volunteering with Michigan Theater downtown as an usher for many years. She also volunteered with the Saline library and their garden club for several years. Upon her retirement in 2007, she then made new friends with the Saline Senior Center and enjoyed many fun times with her friends playing Manjong and card games. She loved her some Red Lobster, and going out to eat with her friends in the area. She loved and enjoyed every minute she could get with her grandkids. They were the apple of her eye and brought her lots of joy, laughter and happiness.

Survivors include her daughter Larissa (Brian) Cassell, grandchildren Jessica Shelly, Valerie Marie Cassell, Joshua Ishmael Cassell, and Ella Louise Shelly, and her daughter-in-law Diane Shelly. Joan was preceded in death by her parents Earl and Mary, her sons Peter and Andrew Shelly, and her brother Boyd. Cremation has taken place. Visitation will be held on Wednesday, January 4, 2017 at the Robison-Bahnmiller Funeral Home in Saline, MI from 12:00 Noon to 1:00 P.M. with a service starting at 1:00 P.M. Burial will follow in the Highland Cemetery in Ypsilanti, MI. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Joan’s name may be made to Saline Area Social Service, the Saline Senior Center, or to Habitat for Humanity. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home. To sign Joan’s guestbook, to leave a memory, or for more information or directions, please visit

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