Valerie J. Shipman, 64, of The Villages, Florida, and formerly from Johnson City and Waverly, N.Y. passed away on October 12, 2020.
She was predeceased by her parents, Frederick E. Keeley and Bess A. (Hassinger) Keeley; brother, Mark E. Keeley; and nephews, Jeffrey D. Keeley and Andrew P. Keeley.
Val is survived by her loving husband and soulmate, Aloysius E. Shipman; daughter, Jacqueline L. Robinson (Josh); and son, Jeffrey A. (Amanda) Shipman; she was a loving “Mimi” to her grandchildren, Elizabeth K. Robinson, Logan S. Robinson, and Elena G. Shipman; she is also survived by loving family members, brother, Frederick E. (Donna) Keeley; father and mother-in-law, Stephen E. and Patricia A. Shipman; sister-in-law, Marcia L. (Joseph) Murray; brother-in-law, Daniel L. (Cindy) Shipman; brother-in-law, Curtis J. (Donna) Shipman; and several nieces, nephews, cousins, and many special friends.
Valerie was born on October 10, 1956, in Binghamton, N.Y., and grew up in her cherished Fairmont Park neighborhood in Johnson City, N.Y. She was married on October 18, 1980, to her best friend Aloysius E. Shipman and they honeymooned in Hawaii. They moved to Waverly, N.Y. in 1983 where she had two wonderful children who she loved unconditionally and followed them through all of their life activities.
She didn’t remain an empty nester long as she began a monthly dinner club with Becky, Steve, Karen, and Dale that lasted more than 10 years.
A 1974 Johnson City High School graduate, she received her Associate degree from Broome Community College and had a 34-year career with IBM/Lockheed Martin in Owego, NY retiring in 2013. After retirement, she enjoyed traveling to Alaska, Ireland, Scotland, Disney trips with family, and hiking in Maine and the Adirondacks with Becky and Steve. You would always find her with a camera in her hand collecting memories and documenting them in Shutterfly books. She carried the unofficial title of family photographer. She believed it was important to document family history and spent countless hours researching so that she could honor her ancestors and tell their stories to future generations. She traveled to Gettysburg and Andersonville National Cemetery to honor both of her Great-Great-Grandfathers that fought in the Civil War. In 2017 she became a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution. She was always offering a helping hand to family and friends in their quest to find information on their ancestors. Valerie inherited her parent’s love and appreciation of all types of music but her favorite band was The Beatles and she was thrilled to see Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr in concert. The Beatles lyric “In my life, I love you more” was truly her sentiment towards her family and friends. She enjoyed walking six miles a day with her husband, playing games with her precious grandchildren, and attending their activities. Trips to the pumpkin farm and Cider Mill were annual events with them. She always bought a painted pumpkin for her grandchildren. Yearly traditions included Easter egg coloring as well as Gertrude Hawk advent calendars. She enjoyed following her favorite sports teams (NY Yankees/Giants, Notre Dame, St. Bonaventure), along with spending time at her treasured Petonia Lake with family and friends. A special thank you to her family especially Marcia and Joe who opened up their home to help and her Florida family Dan and Cindy who made sure she had everything she needed. Also, thank you to all her friends for their thoughts and prayers and to the staff of the Guthrie Clinic and Robert Packer Hospital for their never-ending care.
A time of calling will be held on Tuesday, October 20, 2020 from 3 to 6 p.m. at Blauvelt Funeral Home, 625 Broad Street, Waverly, New York. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Wednesday, October 21, 2020 at 10:00 a.m. at St. James Church, 503 Clark Street with Rev. Daniel White officiating and burial to follow at St. James Cemetery in Waverly.
In lieu of flowers please consider a random act of kindness and hug your loved ones. For those wishing to send a message of sympathy, you may visit our Facebook page or in “Obituaries” at www.blauveltfuneralhome.com