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William Cobb Shelby

August 20, 1928 ~ May 17, 2018 (age 89)

William Cobb Shelby, age 89, passed away peacefully at his home on May 17, 2018 with his daughter and wife by his side.

William “Bill” was born in Tuscaloosa, Alabama on August 20, 1928 where he worked the farmland with his grandfather’s oxen before beginning his transient childhood across the south. He enrolled to serve in WWII after the attack on Pearl Harbor and joined the Navy’s cleanup crews in the Pacific.

After his time in the military, Bill married Elva Mono Bouyear after meeting her in California and kissing her as they rang in the New Year in 1947. They moved to Oregon to start their family and Bill settled down into his life as a jack-of-all-trades mechanic and inventor. He always had a project lying around and could be counted on to help fix any household problem. After building his first family home by hand from the ground-up, he used his skills and held a number of jobs, including: a Buick mechanic, a plumber, appliance store and saw shop owner, and an insurance and tool salesman. He also invented and patented the Shelby Boring Table.

Bill’s hobbies included deer and elk hunting, fishing, making sarcastic jokes, and flying around in his Cessna plane (which he once emergency landed in the middle of a busy flying day at PDX, forcing flights to be delayed). Bill Shelby lived his life out-loud, enjoying adventure and a good joke.

He is survived by his wife, Elva Mono; four children, Claudia (Donald Erickson), Donna Raether, Connie (Ross Wescott), and Sharon (Larry Smith); nine grandchildren, Christy, Becky, Michael, Kim, Shelbi, Ryan, Bryce, Elizabeth, and Corbin; nine great-grandchildren, Blake, Mia, Madison, Elliott, Rowen, Isaac, Riley, Emerson, and Ellie; and an extended family of in-laws and adopted grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his granddaughter, Kara.

William’s public memorial will be held at GracePointe Church in Milwaukie, Oregon on Friday, June 8 at 1:00pm.

The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations could be made in William’s name to:


Donations may be made to:

Oregon Food Bank
7900 NE 33rd Dr., Portland OR 97211
Tel: 1-503-853-8727

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