Shelby P. Garee

July 21, 1919 ‒ September 24, 2014

Center Village, Ohio

Shelby P. Garee, age 95 of Center Village, died Wednesday morning September 24, 2014 at Mount Carmel East Hospital in Columbus.
He was born on July 21, 1919 near Sunbury to the late Albert and Ethel (McElwee) Garee and was lifelong Harlem Township resident. He was a member of the Center Village Church of Christ, Harlem Boys Club and the Honorary President of the Liar’s Table at Fracasso’s Village Pizza.
In his early years Shelby worked at Curtis Wright and North American Aviation as a Tool and Die Maker, he then became a school bus driver for Harlem Schools and Big Walnut Schools for 30 years and in his words he hauled em on the school bus. Shelby’s passion in life was farming and he loved working with the soil, milking cows, planting the seeds and watching them grow to produce a crop. He farmed with horses up until 1950 and then went to tractors to till the earth.
Shelby is known far and wide in Harlem Township and is fondly remembered by his second family, the one’s he hauled on the bus, and all of his friends in Harlem Township. Harlem Township has lost a great man and he will be missed by many.
He is survived by daughter: Linda Sue Skinner of Center Village; sons: Stephen of Sunbury, Greg (Nadine) of Galena; grandchildren: Will of Delaware, Jason (Stephanie) of Westerville; great granddaughter: Evelyn.
Preceded in death by his wife Esther M. (Mitchell) Garee on March 4, 2006; brothers and sisters-in-law: Paul and Betty, Keith and Harriett, William and Betty Jean.
Friends may call Monday from 4-8 p.m. at the DeVore-Snyder Funeral Home, SR 3 at 61, Sunbury where services will be held Tuesday 11 a.m. with Pastor Bud Leskovac officiating. Interment will follow in the Fancher Cemetery,
Memorial contributions can be made to the Jackson Farms Relay for Life (checks to American Cancer Society) 2341 S State Route 605, Galena, Ohio 43021.
Condolences may be expressed at

    • thanks so much. Retired 2 1/2 years ago to take care of Dad and it has been
      quite a journey, but Steve and I were able to keep him at home until the last 2 1/2 days.
      I will be in touch soon.

  • Dear Garee Family,
    Your friends at Harlem Road United Methodist Church send their love and prayers during this season of grief and loss. Shelby was a special guy who was loved greatly in our community. He will be missed sadly and it leaves a void in our lives.
    Blessings to you all,
    Pastor Bud

  • Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this time. He was my bus driver for several years. He was a great and honest man. He will be greatly missed by many.

  • This breaks my heart to hear that Shelby has passed. I will forever cherish the countless hours we spent talking at Whistle Stop about the little town of Centre Village and of Mr. Shelby’s life.
    Shelby was one of the kindest most hardworking men I have ever known..
    It was an honor to know you and to call you my friend .. RIP Mr Shelby Garee ..
    This little town will not be the same without you.
    Our condolences to all of Shelby’s family..

  • Our thoughts and prayers are with all of Shelby’s friends and family. He will be greatly missed in our community and leaves behind a beautiful legacy to his family, friends and farming community. We were proud to have known him and called him our friend. To the family, you were blessed and honored to have a man like Shelby in your life. Remember that and carry it on to future generations in honor of the father, grandfather and great-grandfather you loved.

    Bless you all~
    Gary and Anne

  • Our thoughts and prayers are with you all. He will be greatly missed. He loved seeing the boy’s and telling them stories about farming, plus answering their questions.
    Bless you all.
    Crystal, Thomas, Keith & Austin

  • Our prayers and thoughts are with the whole family. We lost a great person we have enjoyed getting to know.

  • We are so sorry to hear of the loss of a wonderful man. He lived a full and satisfying life and will be remembered and missed.

  • Our thoughts and prayers are with the family. I have many fond memories of Shelby as my bus driver for years, telling stories at Taylor’s General Store, and the farming community. The community has lost a great man!

    • And oh what stories he could tell. He loved all those “Stein kids”, and you were probably in some of those stories Connie.

  • Your loved one lived a long life.He was granted with what the Bible calls “special mightiness”(Psalms 90:10)He seemed to be well liked and cared about by all.It’s comforting to know that there’s a real hope that one day you will be reunited with your loved one again by means of the “RESURRECTION”.(John 5:28,29) May you look towards that hope.I’m sorry for your loss.

  • We were deeply saddened to hear of Shelby’s passing. All three of our children rode his bus #12 and have so many good memories of those times. During football games I would walk over to where the buses were parked to talk to Shelby and Gene, I loved hearing about the history of Sunbury. Shelby was a warm and caring man that was a friend to everyone he met. He will be greatly missed, may he RIP.

    Your neighbors, Ping and Joyce

    • Thank you for keeping that friendship all those years. He always enjoyed seeing you and the wonderful cards you sent.

  • The first time I met Shelby he was just coming in for lunch after working with the cows all morning. I met him by his back door and he ushered me into his home like I was a lifelong friend. I fell in love with Shelby and Esther and would stop just to visit when I was near their home. We were so blessed to know him and will be eternally grateful for the friendship we had and for his willingness to sell us land for the County EMS Station. Rest in peace my friend you will carry on in our memories.

    • Mom & Dad both enjoyed your visits. I was so glad to see you the other evening. It truly meant a lot. Thanks again.

  • Shelby “hauled me in” for many years on bus #12. He was one of the first people I met when we moved from Columbus to County Line Road, and he made me feel welcome and in the same vein let me know he was a no nonsense guy. Many years and many miles later Shelby would joke with me or when I was up to no good straighten me out with one glare into the mirror. A good man took his last bus ride, and we will miss him. Rest in Peace Shelby, thank you for helping guide me to becoming a man.

    • Thank you so much James. He enjoyed having you as one of “em” he hauled on the school bus.

    • I bet you will and I will too. The morning Dad when to the hospital, he was asked Steve if they were going for parts and went they would eat breakfast.
      Thanks so much.

  • What a pleasure it was to know Shelby. All of the kids rode his bus and enjoyed it whenever they saw him outside of work. Listening to the stories while hanging out at Taylors store and watching the older man in town play pool in the basement there.. His passing brings back many memories that I have not thought of for many years.
    Rest in peace Shelby and God bless your family

  • Linda, Steve, Greg and family: Shelby became a beloved member of many families over the years, particularly ours, throughout his lifetime as a multi-generation bus driver, local farmer and friend. Our family has many fond memories of him and he is a favored character in the stories that are shared at family events. He is part of the “old breed” and they just don’t make’em like that anymore. Men of true grit, integrity, character, devotion, and among the hardest workers you’ll ever trip across. Our hearts share in your loss… but our loss is heaven’s gain, and I am quite sure there was a terrific celebration at his entrance into heaven. May God bless your hearts, fill them with His comfort and provide His immeasurable peace as you move forward on this earth without him. He is remembered with great fondness.

    On behalf of the Jacobus family, our deepest sympathy and prayers.

    • The Jacobus and Garee Families have a long history. Thank you so much for this, it is really appreciated.

  • Mr Garee, You became one of my most cherished friends and I was your most trusted medic. We had so many laughs and you always had a wonderful story to tell. I’ll always remember how you stopped at the station and asked me if I’d like it if you planted “a little” corn for me. You planted me a dozen rows…all the way from your house, past the station and out to the road!! Every spring you’d stop at the station and ask me what you should plant that year. I’d always tell you to plant the entire farm with strawberries! You’d shake your head and remind me that we’d never be able to pick that many.
    The memories are sweet and will last until I see you again, my friend. I’ll miss you dearly.
    your medic and friend, Sandy Ridgway

    • Thank you so much Sandy. And yes, you were Shelby’s favorite medic. When it was your day off he would tell me I should have checked first to see if you were down there before calling the squad.

  • I remember Shelby as a farmer and bus driver. Many of us Harlem Township ” kids ” eventually had him as our bus driver at one time or another. No monkey shines on that bus. He was always fair to us. I remember him always giving a Good Morning and a smile when he picked us up in morning. Truely a part of H. T. history for many of us. R.I.P. Shelby My condolences to all of the Garee family.

  • I loved me some Uncle Shelby. I have very fond memories of him. He is with Aunt Esther now. Linda sue you mean the world to me. Wish I could have been there. Watched the slideshow and I remembered that sweet smile. I love you.

    • We were just talking about family a few weeks ago and he asked about you. He remembered you as a very pretty, young lady. I told him, you are now a beautiful lady inside and out.
      Love you too darling and we will talk soon.

  • Bill has so many fond memories of your Dad, from riding his bus to being a neighbor. Your dad was a very special man in our hearts and will always be remembered fondly and sadly missed. Thoughts and prayers are with you, during your time of sorrow.