Shirley Rudd Stephens
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Shirley Ann Stokes Rudd-Stephens, 77 years of age, passed away June 11, 2022, in Tallahassee, Florida. She was born October 16,1944, in Florella, Alabama, to J.C. Stokes and Eunice Stokes. Shirley was raised in Laurel Hill, Florida, and graduated from Laurel Hill High School. Afterwards, Shirley relocated to Melbourne, Florida, where she married James O. Rudd, with whom she had two children, Faith Rudd Leynes and Shane Rudd.
Shirley is survived by her loving husband, Matthew Gene Stephens; her grandchildren, Courtney Leynes, and Robert Leynes III (wife Savanna); two great grandchildren Oliver Owen Leynes and Chloe Elaine Leynes; brothers James Stokes (wife Syretha) and Elwin Stokes (wife Dot) and many nieces and nephews, each of whom was her "favorite".
Shirley was preceded in death by her children; Faith Rudd Leynes and Shane Rudd; her parents; brothers; Donald Stokes, William G. Stokes, and John Stokes; sisters; Gloria Stokes Brock, Mary Stokes Thomas, and Barbara Stokes Riley.
Shirley was gainfully employed throughout her adult life, culminating in being employed as a dispatcher with Talquin Electric Corporation from February of 1988 to her retirement in May of 2009. She was employed at the time of her passing as office manager for Gadsden Psychological Services, Jeffrey Landau, Phd., p.a.
Shirley's first and forever loves were her Savior, Jesus Christ, and her family. She reflected her devotion to The Lord every day in her life, encouraging anyone and everyone she loved, and she loved everyone, to be "happy, healthy, and Christ like". Shirley enjoyed and loved her Church family and her Blue Star Memorial Highway Bible Study group immensely. The void her passing leaves in them is beyond measure.
Shirley and Gene were married in November of 2019, and those closest to her said she was happier than they had ever seen her. They traveled together to the north Georgia towns and mountains they loved, they worshipped together, they visited family and friends together. They enjoyed gospel, country and western, bluegrass, and classic rock and roll music together. They were committed to living and loving together.
Shirley's love for, devotion to, and support of her children and grandchildren were exemplary. She strove to care for and protect them to unfathomable extent. They recognized what an exceptional lady their mother and grandmother was, and she enjoyed the warmth and glow of their affection and appreciation greatly.
Shirley had a special place in her heart for her parents and her brothers and sisters. She stayed in close and frequent contact with family via telephone, visiting, and reunions. The love Shirley and all of her brothers, sisters, nieces, and nephews shared emanated from them like radiant sunshine. Shirley's unexpected and sudden passing was not only her family's loss, it was the world's loss, as well.
The family will received friends, Thursday, June 16, 2022 from 10:00 AM until 11:00 AM at Grace Community Baptist Church in Bainbridge, GA., The funeral service followed at 11:00 AM, with interment at Mount Pleasant Cemetery in Chattahoochee, FL. Lifesong Funerals and Cremations (850-627-1111, www.lifesongfunerals.com) is assisting the family with their arrangements.