The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC

November 14, 2012



TARBORO — Paul David Shirley, Sr., 92, passed peacefully November 11, 2012 at his Chauncey Drive home where he has been surrounded by loving family, friends and caregivers. He was born November 21, 1919 in Edgecombe County. His beloved parents were Frank and Sarah Braddy Shirley. His three siblings predeceased him in death.

Paul was a veteran of World War II, enlisting in the US Navy in February 1942 and was on the maiden voyage of the aircraft carrier Franklin D. Roosevelt. He returned to Tarboro after being honorably discharged in March 1946 and purchased Midway Grocery from his former employer, W. R. Jones. Later that year he married Margaret Virginia Alford of Saint Pauls, N.C.

In 1947 he established the Shirley Bonding Corporation and served as its president 61 years. In 1963 he opened a second grocery store, S & J Grocery Inc. in Princeville. "Mr. Paul" as he was known by his friends and customers, took pleasure from his work because he enjoyed helping people. He was always eager to assist a patron in his stores, or speak with a person in need in his office, and did his utmost to assist his clients in the Court House.

Paul and Margaret were joyfully married for 29 years. The arrivals of sons Paul David Shirley Jr. and Donald Alford Shirley completed their happiness. Margaret passed away at Duke Hospital in 1975 after a courageous battle with cancer. In 1978 Paul married Ruth Clark Mason and they celebrated life together dining out and traveling. After a lengthy stay at the Fountain of the Albemarle, and multiple daily visits by Paul, Ruth passed away in November 2008.

Paul was a lifelong member of Howard Memorial Presbyterian Church, served on its Board of Deacons, and was a member of the Tarboro Kiwanis Club and American Legion.

Paul is survived by his son Donald Alford Shirley and wife Pamela Lytle Shirley of Durham, granddaughter Elizabeth Dian Bradshaw and husband Justin of Raleigh, granddaughter Sarah Christine Rivera and husband Abraham of Raleigh, son Paul David Shirley Jr. and wife Nancy Todd Transou Shirley of Tarboro, granddaughter Kate Mastin Shirley of Asheville, and grandson Michael Paul Shirley of Boone, N.C.

Also surviving are his extended family of nieces and nephews. The Shirley family will received relatives and friends from 7- 9 p.m, Tuesday, Nov. 13 at Carlisle Funeral Home, 701 Hospital Drive, Tarboro, NC.

All are invited to celebrate the life of Paul David Shirley Sr. at the funeral service to be held 11 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 14, at Howard Memorial Presbyterian Church, 303 East Saint James Street, Tarboro, N.C. In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made in his honor to The Red Cross or the charity of your choice.

Arrangements are by Carlisle Funeral Home, Inc., Tarboro. Online condolences may be directed to the family by visiting