Shirley Elizabeth Selkirk Butler Cephas transitioned peacefully on Wednesday, August 23, 2017 at Morningside House of Laurel, Md. Shirley was born on January 12, 1937 in Fork Neck, Md. to Josiah and Hattie Stanley Cephas.
Shirley was educated in the Dorchester County School System attending Trippes Neck Elementary School and Mace's Lane High School. After completing high school she continued her education at Bowie State Teachers College obtaining a Bachelors Degree in Elementary Education and later obtained a Masters degree. She enjoyed stimulating and educating young minds. Shirley retired in 1995 from the Prince George’s County School System.
In 1957, Shirley gave birth to her only child Rodney Cephas. He was the joy of her life. She married her college sweetheart John Butler.
Shirley has always been involved in church. During her youth, she joined Waters Methodist Church, in Fork Neck, MD. After moving to Fort Washington, she became a member of St. Paul Methodist Church. Although she was a member of St. Paul, she never forgot her roots at Waters United Methodist Church, attending the annual Cephas Day Service participating in various aspects of the program. “Aunt Shirley” as she was affectionately known, was as the family historian.
Shirley loved God and her church. She found her church home at St. Paul. She dearly loved her St. Paul family and they loved her. She was an active member participating in several organizations: the United Methodist Women, the United Methodist Choir, January Birthday Club, Sunday and Vacation Bible School, and the St. Paul Summer Camp Program.
She loved skiing to the point that she actually bought her own pair of skis. Being an avid traveler she enjoyed European countries, cruising to various ports including Jamaica, Alaska, and the Bahamas. Additionally she enjoyed outings with the Red Hatters. She loved her Washington Redskins and was able to convert a resistant Dallas Cowboy fan to root for and adopt the Redskins team.
Left to cherish her memories are three sisters and three brothers: Shelby Fenwick (Jesse). Baltimore, MD, Jeanette Cephas, Yonkers, NY, and Joyce Cephas, Fort Washington, MD, Elton and Theodore Cephas, Vienna, MD, Weejay Cephas (Edie), Wilmington, DE. She has two grandchildren Jason Cephas, Columbia, South America and Whitney Cephas Hammer (Alan), Toledo, OH. She has two great-grandchildren Elijah Cephas and Ophelia Hammer. She has several nieces, nephews and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Hattie and Josiah Cephas, her son, Rondey Cephas, sister, Celia Mae Simmons, and brothers, Melvin, Dolbert, Landy, Arnold M., Junior P., Cleamon, Arnold P. Cephas, and a special friend Charles Parris.
Special thanks to:
Gwendolyn Terrel and Shirley Smith for their regular visits and serving communion, staff of Morningside House of Laurel, the staff of Seasons Hospice, and Beverly Morgan, a devoted friend and constant visitor.
A Celebration of Life Service for Shirley will be held 11am on Thursday, Aug. 31, 2017 at St. Paul U.M. Church 6634 St. Barnabas Road Oxon Hill, MD 20745. Viewing begins at 10am followed by the services officiated by Rev. Dr. Darryl L. Williams. Interment in Fork Neck Cemetery, Fork Neck, Maryland.
In lieu of flowers memorial contributions can be made to St. Paul UMC and Season’s Hospice and Pallative Care.