Obituary: Phyllis Shelite

Staff Writer

TULSA, OKLA.—Phyllis Jean (Simpson) Shelite, 89, passed from this life Thursday, May 21, 2020 at Porta Caeli House in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She was born February 2, 1931, in Wichita, Kansas to Robert Clarke and Marjorie (Rozelle) Simpson.

She was a graduate of Medicine Lodge High School in Medicine Lodge, Kansas 1949 and went on to attend Emporia State Teachers College from 1949-50. Phyllis returned home to teach 1st-8th grade at Union School in a one-room school house south of Medicine Lodge. Upon her return home she met and married Rea LaVern Shelite on October 6, 1950. To this union five children were born.

Phyllis was a faithful member of the First Christian Church, serving as Sunday School Superintendent, Sunday School teacher, Vacation Bible School Director, Church camp counselor, Choir member, Church secretary and CWF, just to name a few. Phyllis served her community as Boy Scout Den Mother, Girl Scout Leader, and Mother's Club. Phyllis was an excellent seamstress making most of her children's clothing. Her home was filled with music as she taught her children to sing acapella harmony from an early age. During her children's teen years, Phyllis returned to Medicine Lodge as the Assistant Librarian. Rea and Phyllis retired to Pratt, Kansas. Phyllis moved to Tulsa, Oklahoma in January 2020 to be near her daughters.

She is preceded in death by her husband, Rea; her parents, Robert Clarke and Marjorie (Rozelle) Simpson; and her sister, Evelyn Pierce.

She is survived by son Paul Kevin Shelite and wife Shirley of Hutchinson; daughters Alyce Anne Byers and husband Daniel of Whitehouse, Texas, Janet Leigh Koch and husband Bill or Lyons, Kala Sue Schwerdtfeger and husband Ron of Tulsa, Okla., and Donna Rea Shelite of Tulsa, Okla.; 11 grandchildren, and 16 great-grandchildren; two brothers, Richard Simpson and wife Joy, Phillip Simpson, and one sister, Mary Rucker and husband David.

Graveside services will be held May 30, 2020 at 1 p.m. at Highland Cemetery, Medicine Lodge, Kansas. Bring a chair if you would like to do so.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Porta Caeli House, 2440 N. Harvard Ave., Tulsa, Oklahoma, 74115.