Audrey Catherine (Sheasley) Kirkwood, 82 of rural Albany, Indiana, died January 12th surrounded by her family at Albany Health and Rehabilitation. She was born September 10th, 1939 in Williamsville, NY to the late Lee and Joanna (Klein) Sheasley. On November 28th, 1963, she married James John Kirkwood who proceeded her in death on November 29th, 2021.
Audrey was preceded in death by her parents, younger sister Susan Wahr, Batavia, NY, and daughter-in-law Lonna Orman Kirkwood. She is survived by her five children: Michael, Albany, IN; Matthew (Shalon) Fargo, ND; Martin, Westfield, IN; Stacey Smith, Greenwood, IN; and Jaimie Kirkwood, Rochester, IN, her fourteen grandchildren: McKhi and Mattea Kirkwood; McKenna (Jacob) Schaefer, Keegan, and Garren Kirkwood; Catherine (fiancé Jared), Patrick, Erin, and Laura Smith; and Sophie, Hannah (fiancé Jaylen), Eli, Zoe, and Abraham Seward; and two great-grandchildren: Jett and Charlotte.
Audrey’s abundant and devoted love for her family was demonstrated through her joy and creativity in celebrating holidays and birthdays. She will long be remembered for her Easter egg hunts, family gatherings, holiday decorations, holiday and birthday cards, and annual calls to grandchildren to sing happy birthday in harmony with Jim. She will also be remembered for her love of fashion and shopping.
Audrey graduated from Alden Central High School in Alden, NY and graduated from the State University of New York at Buffalo in 1961 with a Bachelor of Science in Education for Exceptional Children. She then went on to earn her Masters of Science in Education in 1978 from Ball State University.
Audrey had a long career in education. She taught general and special education classes in NY for three years. She taught at St. Francis de Sales School in Marsh Harbor, Bahamas when she and her husband moved there for a year with their five young children. Audrey went on to work at Ball State University, where she started as an Instructor of Elementary Education specializing in reading and finished her career as the Director of the Learning Center. She loved working with her graduate students during her time at the Learning Center. Audrey was a member of the Midwest College Learning Center Association, and was recognized for her tireless work toward the advancement of post-secondary education.
Audrey was a member of St. Francis Catholic Newman Center since 1969, where she previously served as an extraordinary minister of communion. She also volunteered at various activities to support her children’s many whims. Most recently, she volunteered at the Albany Community Library.
A funeral Mass was celebrated with family at St. Francis of Assisi Parish & Newman Center followed by a private burial at Beech Grove Cemetery, in Muncie, Indiana. A celebration of life will be held for both Audrey and James at a future date.
The family would like to thank the staff at Albany Health and Rehabilitation Center for the respectful and loving care they provided to both Audrey and James during the final months of their lives.
Donations may be made in Audrey’s name to the Albany Community Library at P.O. Box 282, Albany, IN 47320.