Mae Phippen Sealy April 7, 1922 — June 11, 2015
Again! Friends since junior high, married for over 70 years,
Shirley and Milt are reunited after a three-and-a-half-year
separation here on earth.
Shirley Mae Phippen Sealy — Daughter, Sister, Wife,
Mother, Grandmother, Friend, Singer, Writer, Performer.
Her patriarchal blessing said she "sang and shouted
for joy" at the opportunity to come to earth and receive
her body. She has completed her earthly mission and has
returned to her Heavenly home, now singing with the angels!
Shirley, age 93, passed away on June 11,2015, at the Ashford
Assisted Living Center in Highland, Utah, from causes incident
to age; surrounded by love on both sides of the veil. Shirley
loved Life; Gospel, Husband, Children, Home, and Family.
She was a woman of faith with a positive personality. Her
life was filled with service; her heart full of love.
Shirley was born April 7, 1922, in Rupert, Idaho to Melvin
Earl Phippen and Edna Laker Cook. She was raised and educated
in Logan, Utah; graduated from Logan High School in 1940.
A year later she married Leon Milton Sealy on September
17, 1941 in Preston, Idaho; sealed December 18, 1942 in
Logan Temple, Utah. Milton passed away November 30, 2011,
in St. George, Utah. During their first 30 years together
they raised five children in Salt Lake City, Utah. The next
30 years were spent in Highland, Utah, and the last decade
in St. George, Utah. Much to the delight of those who missed
her, Shirley returned to Highland during her final six-months.
Shirley was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day
Saints. She loved the youth of the Church and dedicated
her life to helping them learn and grow. As one of the first
LDS fiction authors, Shirley is remembered as a pioneer
in LDS fiction. For over 20 years she was a popular storytelling
author, in demand as a speaker for youth groups and conferences.
When asked why she liked to write she said, "Writing
is the best way I know to get the inside out. I write to
find out about me. I write about life, not especially as
it is, but as it can and should be."
Shirley was a Thoroughly Modern Millie kind of girl who
loved learning new things. She enjoyed computer technology,
modern decor, and the arts—theater, music, painting
and literature. Her years of dedicated church service in
various callings filled her life with beauty and helped
her see goodness with spiritual eyes. She wrote and directed
numerous ward road shows, stake drama productions, and June
Conference plays for the Young Woman’s General Board.
Shirley was also a popular performer in the Salt Lake Valley
among women's organizations. She wrote her own mini versions
of Broadway musicals, sewing original costumes, and using
her vocal talents to delight both young and old. She also
enjoyed performing as a soloist and member of the Allegro
Choir in Salt Lake City.
Shirley’s sewing skills have blessed the lives of
her children and numerous grandchildren throughout her life.
She spent many late nights sewing everything from Halloween
costumes to prom dresses, bridesmaid dresses, and wedding
gowns. As a grandmother she quilted and tied countless baby
blankets that became cherished favorites to snuggle with.
Grandchildren who visited her never left empty-handed, always
taking home a healthy homemade cookie. Even in her advanced
years she had a supply of suckers and chocolate ready for
During her Highland years, Shirley contributed to a local
newspaper column and taught writing classes for the community
education program. She took advantage of every opportunity
to gain knowledge, attending BYU Education Week every year,
and adopting her mentor's Steven Covey's ideas of personal
development. Whether writing books, doing genealogy and
personal histories, or just lending a listening ear, Shirley
was an example of strength during adversity—a hero
in her own story. She is loved and admired by her posterity
and friends, and although considered a celebrity in literary
circles, to her five children she is just "Mom."
We love you Mom. We've always felt your love. We carry it
in our hearts like a song, until we meet again.
Shirley is survived by her three daughters, Vicki Clayton
(Richard), Linda Ottley (Dale), and Loni Hatch (Blaine);
by her son-in-law, Neal Maxfield (Jeannine), and daughter-in-law,
Lori Sealy. Survived by her sisters, Ruth Malmberg, Claudia
King, brother, McKay Phippen (Joyce), plus 24 grandchildren,
50 great-grandchildren, and two great, great grandchildren.
Also survived by seven half-brothers and sisters, Earl Phippen
(Marie), Joan Lindley (Gary), Gaylene Wright (Rodney), David
Phippen, Cora McKinney, Cathy Severe (Jeff), and Julie Ball.
Preceded in death by her husband, Milton Sealy, her parents,
daughter, Judy Maxfield, son, Devro Sealy, daughter-in-law,
Gayle Birch Sealy, and grandson, Skyler Sealy; preceded
in death by her brother, Melvin Phippen, sisters, Maurine
Dunford, Dona Andrews, and Helen Phippen.
As her family, we would like to express our heartfelt thanks
to Platinum Care Assisted Living, St. George, Utah, Ashford
Assisted Living, Highland, Utah, and Brighton Home Health
and Hospice, for their loving and respectful care.
Funeral services will be held Friday, June 26, 2015, at
11:00 am at the Highland 4th LDS Avonmore Chapel, 5848 West
11000 North, Highland, Utah. Family and friends may call
Thursday evening from 6:00-8:00 pm at the Warenski Funeral
Home, 1776 North 900 East, American Fork, Utah and also
at an additional viewing on Friday morning from 9:30-10:30
am prior to services at the church. Interment will take
place Saturday, June 27, 2015 at 12:00 noon in the Laketown
Cemetery in Laketown, Utah.