Cover photo for Shirley D Arrington's Obituary
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1949 Shirley 2023

Shirley D Arrington

1949 — February 14, 2023

On Tuesday, February 14, 2023, just before the morning sunrise at 4:42am, the Angel of Silence came and sealed the eyes of, Shirley Dean Arrington. Her soul winged its flight from the world of sickness and pain to a place of eternal rest with the Lord, the One she confessed her hope to at an early age and continued to this day.

The book of life for Shirley opened on Sunday, February 5, 1949, when she was born to the late, William Owen and Josephine Kelley in Leeds, Alabama. She was the tenth child of ten, in which Marie, Josephine (Bowleg}, Ernest (Man), Ora (Big Mama), Annie, and William Jr. (Billy) all preceded her in death.

Later the family moved to Acmar, AL and then to Birmingham, AL, where Shirley attended public schools. As a child she was fondly called Shirl Dean, by her parents, and Shu Gul, by her youngest brother, Billy, you better believe she preferred, Shirley. During this time, is when Shirley met her closest friend and future husband, Cleophus (Cle). As children they were close and true believers of the civil rights movement. On May 2-3, 1963, Shirley and Cle were two of the five thousand school students that marched on Birmingham, in the Children March on Alabama. The purpose of the March was to walk downtown to talk to the mayor about segregation in their city. They left their school as many others did and were among the hundreds of children that were arrested by the police. Shirley and Cle were united in marriage on Wednesday, June 12, 1964, and to this union, two children were born: Angela Denise (Nicey) and Cleophus Pierre Jr.

Shirley and her family relocated to Chicago, IL, eventually making Zion, IL their home. Shirley and Cle became block club captains and foster parents. She, being a highly active and caring person, devoted work and time to troubled children with the Lincoln Challenge Program, worked at the children's after-school program at Beulah Park Elementary, and with the first graders at Beauty Park. Shirley was very committed to the elderly; making deliveries for meals-on-wheels and at one point working as a homecare giver. Shirley was an entrepreneur in her own rights. Just to name a couple of her talents, she was a caterer, baker, fundraiser, and Floral Coordinator.

We will always hold in memory her loving beautiful smile, contagious laughter, bossiness, and determination. Shirley Dean Arrington leaves to cherish her loving memory; her friend and devoted loving husband Cleophus, (2) children, (1) son-in-law and (1) daughter-in-law, Angela D. (Nicey) Brown (Clarence), of Zion IL, Cleophus Arrington (Pierre) Jr. (Mary) of Azle, TX. (5) sisters-in-law - Irene Kelley and Cassandra Arrington of Birmingham, AL, Betty Jean, Debbie, and Ruby Arrington of Atlanta, GA (3) sisters - Mattie T. White of Chicago, IL, Murriah Mell of Cleveland, OH, and Sarah M. Johnson of Fredericksburg, VA, (3) aunts - Katherine Williams of Columbus, GA, Marion Rand of Kenosha, WI, and Mary Dean Turner of Marion, AL., (8) grandchildren, (15) great-grandchildren, (2) great-great grandchildren, a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
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