Shirley Rose Nelson

August 27, 1935 ‒ November 29, 2020

Delaware, Ohio

Shirley Rose Skatzes Nelson died November 29, 2020 in Marysville, Ohio, of complications from dementia, the scourge of her family. She was 85 years old.

Shirley was born on August 27, 1935 to the late Clare and Carl Skatzes of Delaware, the last of ten children. She was a lifelong Delaware resident, living at only two addresses in Delaware before moving into memory care in November 2018. In addition to her parents, her seven brothers and two sisters all predeceased her.

Shirley married the love of her life, Marvin Dale Nelson, when they eloped to Liberty, Indiana on February 27, 1953. To her surprise when she returned to Willis High School later that week, her closest friend, Jean Gale Rutledge, had eloped the very same night to the very same town.

Shirley and Marvin had five children, Marvin Dale, Jr. (who died October, 2015), Heather Diane (who died in infancy in March, 1955), April (Warren Hyer), Michel Brian (Kate), and Mark Christopher (Jackie); 7 grandchildren, Brian, Margaret, Timon, Matthew, Elizabeth, Benjamin, and Samuel, and 8 great-grandchildren. She is also survived by her sister-in-law, Gail Rubinowski of Chula Vista, California, and many nieces and nephews.

Shirley was a stay-at-home mother for many years, then became a school bus driver for the Delaware City Schools, a job she held for almost two decades and one which she enjoyed immensely and in which she took great pride. She kept her bus immaculate inside and out. Shirley took her job seriously and got to know many of the children she ferried to and from school and school events. It was not unusual, long after she had stopped driving, for men and women to come up to her and exclaim, “You were my bus driver!”

She and Marvin traveled extensively, first with children in tow and then as empty nesters. They saw most of the continental United States, Hawaii, eastern Canada, and what was then East and West Germany when her sons and their families were stationed overseas. Regardless of where she and Marvin went and who or what they saw, Shirley was always happiest when she got back to Delaware and her own bed.

Shirley was confirmed in her youth at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Delaware, Ohio, which she attended for many years. She then attended St. John’s Lutheran in Columbus for many years. In her final years, she and Marvin returned to St. Mark’s, which she belonged to at the time of her death.

Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, there will be no calling hours or funeral service. Graveside services will be held on Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 2:30 pm Green Mound Cemetery in Kilbourne with Pastors Wendy and Craig Richter officiating. Face masks and social distancing are required.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the charity of one’s choice.

The Snyder-Rodman Funeral Center is honored to serve the Nelson family.

To share a fond memory of Shirley or to offer a condolence to her family, please visit

  • What does one say on the loss of her best friend of 79 years? Shirley, Dale, Carroll and I shared laughter and tears, good times and bad. She was always there for me. How I’ll miss her. 😢 😢 😢

  • I am sorry to hear of this sadness. Prayers of comfort and peace to you Michel and Kate and family.

  • Our thoughts and prayers are with Dale and the family. Kathy and I sat close to Dale and Shirley at St. Marks church services. We will miss Shirley’s sense of humor and the conversations we had before and after service.