Joann Violet Shelton, age 88, passed away peacefully at her home in Dunsmuir, CA, on Thursday, August 3, 2017 of cancer. She was born Violet Joan Fouts on August 22, 1928 at Dunsmuir, the only child of John Henry Fouts and Violet May Holcomb Fouts. Her mother passed away from pulmonary embolism eight days after Joann was born. When Joann was six years old she went to live with her maternal grandparents, William and Ava Holcomb of Dunsmuir. Joann graduated from Dunsmuir High School in 1946 and then married the love of her life for the past 70 years, Joseph N. Shelton, on September 6, 1946 at Dunsmuir. She always said she could not resist marrying Joe because he looked so handsome in his Navy uniform. Accepting his proposal by mail while Joe was stationed in Seattle at the conclusion of WWII, the postman got the honor of placing her engagement ring on her finger.
After their marriage, Joann and Joe lived in Weed where they became parents of their first three children, Bill, Julia, and Patricia. They relocated to Sacramento, then to Fair Oaks, California for 20 years where they adopted Yolanda, their fourth child. They lived for a number of years in San Leandro and after Joe retired they moved to Dunsmuir and have resided there for the past 35 years.
Joann loved to love on people and had a servant’s heart. Her hands were rarely still. For many years she enjoyed raising African Violets. She loved to sew, knit, and quilt and nearly every child, grandchild, and great grandchild as well as many friends, newlyweds, and new parent’s were recipients of her creative handiwork. An accomplished pianist, she served as a church pianist and organist for 65 years wherever Joann and Joe lived, worked, and in Joe’s retirement years in Dunsmuir. Throughout her life of serving others she played the piano for her children’s school musical programs, community holiday musical events, traveled in their 5th wheel with a construction team to help build churches, opened her home for women’s Bible studies, volunteered her time in the church kitchen during the summer months feeding local children, helped at local libraries and, most recently, Joann volunteered her time at Unexpected Treasures in Dunsmuir. Joann cherished living in Dunsmuir where she could see the majestic beauty of Mount Shasta, the Castle Crags and hear the rattle and whistle of the train from her home.
Joann was a living example of the Bible verse, “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path,” and we were blessed to learn many valuable lessons from her during her 88 years, among them: have a gentle heart and be humble, live a life of love and forgiveness, be a servant, we were taught how to sew and a love for music and the arts, every once in a while eat apple pie for breakfast, some of us caught her charm for elephants, never throw away anything if it can be used for something else or if someone else needs it give it to them, use your time and talents wisely, don’t use slang. We were taught manners and how to be a gentleman and a lady, be hospitable to visitors and, most importantly, we were taught how to love Jesus.
Joann is survived by her husband of 70 years, Joseph N. Shelton, four children, William Joseph Shelton (Loi) of Sacramento, Julia Ann Bordona (Steve) of Modesto, Patricia Violet Weaver (Jeff)of Manteca, and Yolanda Shelton of Castro Valley, fifteen grandchildren, Joseph Shelton, Samuel Shelton (Julie), Mathew Shelton (Brandy), Christy Clark (Don), Tom Lucas (Shelly), Brandon Gilbert (Donna), Erin Monroe (Brian), Jordan Weaver ( Janessa), Raymond Weaver (Emiko), Nathan Weaver (RaeAne), Manuel Fernandes, Gregory Fernandes (Maria), Joanna Reid, Sarah Hewitt, John London, and Anthony London, twenty-four great grandchildren, her sister-in-law Jean Parker (Jay) of Nampa, Idaho, many beloved nieces, nephews and friends, and their faithful dachshund, Max. She was predeceased in death by her beloved aunt’s, Josephine Holcomb Andreatta and Ruth Holcomb Shelton. All of these she loved and touched deeply.
If Joann were here today, she would tell you to live your life so that when you die the preacher can tell the truth about you at your funeral.
She is interred next to her mother at the Dunsmuir City Cemetery, Dunsmuir, CA.