Cropseyville- Shirley L. (Hakes) Wheeler, 83, a longtime resident of South Road, died peacefully at her residence on Wednesday, June 22, 2016, surrounded by her children and grandchildren.
Born in Troy on May 28, 1933, Shirley was the daughter of the late Leslie B. and Marion (Rifenburg) Hakes and, for over 50 years, the wife of the late Thomas A. Wheeler, who predeceased her on October 30, 2005.
Shirley was a graduate of Troy High School and earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Physical Therapy at Russell Sage College in Troy.
After over 30 years of service, Shirley retired as the Assistant Chief of Physical Therapy at Memorial Hospital in Albany. In addition to her long and successful medical career, Shirley was the beloved matriarch and rock of the Wheeler family; she loved nothing more than spending time with her children and grandchildren, whether that meant traveling to track meets and football games, or taking quarterly trips to Virginia to check in on the southern branch of the family. Those who knew Shirley best know that her perfect evening was one ending in coffee ice cream and a friendly game of poker.
A selfless and peaceful woman, Shirley made a point of attending weekly services at Hope United Methodist Church in Eagle Mills, where she was involved as a trustee, member of the United Methodist Women’s group, and many of the church’s groups and clubs.
Shirley is survived by her three children, Katherine W. Ventker (husband, David) of Virginia Beach, Michael P. Wheeler (wife, Lisa) of Brunswick, and William E. Wheeler of Cropseyville, four grandchildren, Sarah Ventker of Virginia Beach, Emily Ventker of Connecticut, Kyle Wheeler of Troy, and Morgan Wheeler of Boston, a sister, Betsy Brenenstuhl of Grafton, and several nieces and nephews. In addition to her parents and husband, Shirley is predeceased by an infant grandson, the late John David Ventker.
A memorial service, with reception to follow, will be held on Monday, June 27, 2016, at 7:00 P.M. at Hope United Methodist Church in Eagle Mills, with Rev. David Martin officiating. Relatives and friends are invited to call at the Church from 5:00 – 7:00 P.M. prior to the service. Burial will be private at the convenience of the family at the Gerald B.H. Solomon - Saratoga National Veterans Cemetery.
As a thank you for the special and loving care shown to their mother, the Wheeler family would like to recommend that memorial contributions be made to Community Hospice, 315 Manning Blvd., Albany, NY 12208 in memory of Shirley H. Wheeler.