ISLAND, Ky. — Shelia Free, 74, of Island, passed away Thursday, Nov. 9, 2023, at her home in Island. Shelia Marcella Wilkerson was born Nov. 3, 1949, in Island, Kentucky to the late Howard Strother and Nellie Mae Poole Wilkerson and was married to Ricky Lee Free on Sept. 8, 1971.
Shelia was a beloved member of the Island community who lived a life full of love, friendship, and service to her community.
In her professional life, Shelia was a respected figure in the banking industry, having retired as vice president of First Security Bank of McLean. Her commitment to her work was only surpassed by her devotion to her family and her community. As a member of the Island United Methodist Church, Shelia’s faith was an essential part of her life and helped shape her as the caring, generous person that she was.
Shelia never met a stranger, and she loved visiting with everyone everywhere. Her home was always open to friends and family, and she enjoyed nothing more than spending time with those she loved, particularly her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Her grandbabies were her life, and she took great joy in their accomplishments and milestones.
Shelia will be remembered for her loving and friendly nature. Her warm smile and kind heart made everyone feel welcome and loved. She was a woman of great strength and resilience, always ready to lend a hand or offer a comforting word. Her memory will remain alive in the hearts of all who knew her, and her legacy of love and friendship will continue to inspire those who were fortunate enough to have known her.
Through her life, Shelia Marcella Free showed us all the true meaning of love, friendship, and community. Her memory will be cherished by all who knew her, and her legacy will continue to inspire future generations.
In addition to her parents, Shelia was preceded in death by her husband of 51 years, Rick Free, who died April 25, 2023, and by a sister, Etta Mae Hodgin.
Shelia is survived by her three daughters, Stacy Maddox (Chris), of Livermore, Kentucky, Andrea Wells (Jody), of Utica, Kentucky, and Monica Jessie (Mike), of Madisonville, Kentucky, and a nephew, who was raised like her own son, Keith Long (Kelley), of Buck Creek, Kentucky. Her legacy will live on through her grandchildren, Brittany Foe (Aaron), Jeremy Wells (Kristen), Sheldon Jessie (Lillie Hill), Wes Wells (Sophie Skinner), and Audrey Jessie. Survivors also include a caregiver, that was like her own granddaughter, Meadow Raper; two great-grandchildren, Blane Foe and Maddilynn Foe; three brothers, Tommy Wilkerson (Ardoth), of Bardstown, Kentucky, Ray Wilkerson (Kay), of Livermore, and Ronnie Wilkerson (Mary), of Island; three sisters, Anna Strole (Charlie), of Island, Darnell Townsley (Louis), of Monon, Indiana, and Debra Jenkins (Rick Rehrman), of Evansville, Indiana; two aunts, Grace Bishop, of Centertown, Kentucky, and Glenna Tucker, of Central City, Kentucky; and several nieces, nephews, and many friends, who were all deeply touched by her loving and friendly nature.
Funeral services will be held at 3 p.m. Monday, Nov. 13, at Muster Funeral Homes, Livermore Chapel. Burial will be in the Island Community Cemetery in McLean County. Friends may visit with Shelia’s family from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. Monday at Musters in Livermore.
The Shelia Free family requests that expressions of sympathy take the form of donations to Island Community Cemetery Fund; C/O Susan Edmonds; 125 East Broadway; Island, Kentucky 42350.
Shelia’s services will be streamed live on musterfuneralhomes.com at 3 p.m. Monday.
Share your memories and photos of Shelia at musterfuneralhomes.com.