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Sherry Shelton Tilson

Sherry Shelton Tilson, age 65, Erwin, went home to be with the Lord Sunday morning, May 19, 2013, at her home surrounded by her loving family.
She was a native of Unicoi County and a daughter of Jessie and Dwight “Dad” Shelton, Erwin and the late Claude Shelton, Sr.
Mrs. Tilson was a medical assistant for Dry Creek Medical Center. She was an active lifelong member of Chestoa Missionary Baptist Church where she served in various capacities including church secretary, pre-school Sunday School teacher and the Ladies Missionary Group Chairperson. She was a loving wife, mom, grandmother “nanny”, daughter, sister and aunt.

In addition to her mother and “Dad”, Mrs. Tilson is survived by her loving husband of 48 years, Jimmy Wayne Tilson; ; one daughter: Tammy and Jeff Callahan; one son: Regan and Donna Tilson; three grandchildren: Caleb, Caylee and Gracie Tilson and a soon to arrive fourth grandchild, all of Erwin.
“Adopted babies”: Deanna and Addison Ward and Zachary Miller; one brother: Claude and Diane Shelton, Jr., Jonesbourgh; two sisters: Diann and Gerald Hensley, Erwin, Deborah and Wade Christian, Nashville; one brother-in-law: Harold Tilson; one sister-in-law: Sharon Tilson, both of Erwin; nieces and nephews: Cynthia and Randy Hall, Johnathan and LeeAnn Hensley, Timothy and Robin Hensley, Anthony and Heather Shelton, Deanna and Andy Ward, Wendy and James Pohorence, Susan and Jason Highfill, Mattie Tilson and Jason Tilson, Lora Crowe and Josh Tilson. Several great nieces, great nephews, and many close friends also survive.

The family will receive friends from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. Monday, May 20, 2013. at Robert Ledford Funeral Home and Chapel. Mrs. Tilson will lie in state from 10:00 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. Tuesday, May 21, 2013 at Chestoa Missionary Baptist Church.
Funeral service will follow at 11:00 a.m. Tuesday. Eulogies will be delivered by Regan Tilson and Johnathan Hensley. Interment will follow in Evergreen Cemetery. Active pallbearers will be Jimmy, Regan and Caleb Tilson, Gerald, Johnathan and Timothy Hensley and Anthony Shelton. Honorary pallbearers will be Jeff Callahan, Wade Christian, Randy Hall, Roger Hilemon, the Men's Sunday School Class of Chestoa Missionary Baptist Church and officers of the Erwin Police Department.

Those wishing may make memorial contributions to Chestoa Missionary Baptist Church, Fellowship Hall Building Fund, 2170 Chestoa Pike, Erwin, Tennessee, 37650.

If I should ever leave you,
Whom I Love,
To go along the silent way,
Grieve not,
Nor speak of me with tears.

But laugh and talk of me
As if I were beside you there
For I will come–I'll come !
Would I not find a way,
Were tears and grief not be barriers?

And when you hear a song or see a bird I loved,
Please do not let your thoughts of me be sad.
For I am loving you just as I always have…
You who were so good to me !

There are so many things I wanted still to do-
So many things to say to you…
Remember, please, that I did not fear death.
It was just leaving you that was so hard to face.

You cannot see beyond this life
But this you know… I loved you so
Never doubt that I am with you still !
For love does not die with the body
And nothing in heaven or on earth
Can keep apart those who love.
Author Unknown

Online condolences, photos and memories may be shared with the Tilson family through our complimentary, interactive Book of Memories at

Robert Ledford Funeral Home and Chapel, 720 Ohio Avenue, Erwin, is privileged to serve the Tilson family. (423) 743-1380.