W.E. "Gene" Shelton, 74, of Manila, died Saturday, Aug. 17, 2002, at St. Bernards Medical Center in Jonesboro. Born at Dell, he was the son of the late Will Ed and Abbie Morris Shelton. He moved to Manila in 1944 and farmed in the Milligan Ridge community until his retirement. He was a member of the First Baptist Church and was a U.S. Navy veteran. He was a 1945 graduate of Manila High School and according to his family was an avid and very knowledgeable baseball fan. For many years he served as an umpire and coach for various softball and baseball programs on Buffalo Island.
He is survived by his wife, Betty Jean Holt Shelton, of the home; a son, Steve Shelton of the Manila; a daughter, Cathy Shelton of Manila; two brothers, Noble Shelton and Boyd Shelton, both of Jonesboro; three sisters, Joyce Jacobs of Gautier, Miss., Mavis Odell of Lafayette, La., and Nikki Shelton of Acworth, Ga.; five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
The funeral will be held at 10 a.m. today (Tuesday) at Howard Funeral Service Chapel in Manila with Rev. Waymon Holt, Allen Quinn and Ray Dill officiating. Burial will be in the Manila Cemetery under the direction of Howard Funeral Service.
Active pallbearers are Tony Crowell, Brent Farmer, Donald Master, Jim McMillan, Danny Morries and Marty Pulliam. Honorary pallbearers are J.B. Brown, Bud Fowler, Gene Holt, Thomas Jaco, Jim Mills, B.C. Minton, Ken Thompson, Charley Quinn, Lonnie Wright, Clarence Shockley, Carmie Simpkins, Frank Sweat, Ray White and Clifford White.
The family requests that anyone wishing to leave a lasting memorial consider the Family Life Center of the Manila first Baptist Church.