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Frances Ellen (Gordon) Shelhart

Last Updated on January 3, 2024 by Kroeger Funeral Home

Frances Ellen (Gordon) Shelhart died on December 30, 2023, at the age of 93. She passed away at Woodbridge Health Campus, surrounded by family.

Born on April 26, 1930, Frances was the youngest of 12 children born to Charles and Lillie Mae Gordon. She graduated from Logansport High School in 1949 and, the next year, married the man with whom she would spend her next seven decades. Frances and Don Shelhart were wed on September 24, 1950, at Broadway United Brethren Church and remained so for nearly 72 years, until Don’s death in 2022.

Frances spent the bulk of her professional life as an optometrist’s assistant in the office of the late Dr. Howard Carbaugh, where she worked for more than 20 years — but she was equally devoted to her personal pursuits.

A gifted cook and generous host, Frances loved throwing elaborate dinner parties for friends and relatives. She also enjoyed traveling the world. Between church trips, bus tours with her husband, and trips with the Logansport Children’s Choir (which her daughter and son-in-law founded), Frances visited nine countries and two dozen states in her lifetime.

Faith was another core pillar of Frances’s life. Thanks to her diligent follow-through on prayer requests, Frances was known among loved ones for having “a direct line to God.” Her deep-rooted Methodist faith (she was most recently a member of the former First UMC) led her to pursue many volunteer opportunities around Cass County, for which she was named a Pharos-Tribune Good Neighbor in 2002 alongside her husband.

Above all, though, she was known for her card ministry. Frances — or Mimi, as she was known to her granddaughters — loved nothing more than choosing and sending greeting cards, not only to her close relatives but to distant cousins, church acquaintances, and even friends of friends who she thought could use a pick-me-up. She kept a meticulous ledger of correspondents who were due for cards on a weekly, monthly, or yearly basis, and she was known to send as many as 500 cards a year. As a result, her mantel was often covered with cards she received in return from the countless loved ones that she cared so much about.

Frances was a dedicated mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, and she will be missed dearly by the family she leaves behind. Survivors include her children, Jeff (Colleen) Shelhart of Hickory, N.C., and Susan (Tim) Cahalan of Logansport; her grandchildren, Scott (Sue) Shelhart of Claypool, Ind., Brad Shelhart of North Manchester, Ind., Sarah Cahalan of Chicago, and Laura (Alex) Berko of Louisville, Ky.; her step-grandchildren, Christy (Ben) Cook of Washington, D.C., Hillary Colt of Mentone, Ind., and Tyler (Kelly) Colt of Warsaw, Ind.; and her 11 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents, her 11 siblings, and her husband, Don.

The family would like to thank Dr. Keven Dodt and the staffs of Woodbridge Health Campus and Elara Hospice for their compassionate care.

The funeral service is scheduled for 11 a.m. on Friday, January 5, at Kroeger Funeral Home, with Pastor Michael Goodspeed presiding. Visitation will be from 4 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, January 4, at the funeral home.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Cass County Community Foundation or the Indiana Ronald McDonald House (affiliated with Riley Children’s Hospital), 435 Limestone Street, Indianapolis IN 46202.

Messages of condolence may be expressed to the family and community at www.kroegerfuneralhome.com.