November 19, 1925 - September 19, 2022
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Shirley Phylis Gramling Highsmith was a caring wife, mother, grandma, great-grandma (“GG”), sister and friend. She went to be with her Lord and Savior at age 96, on September 19, 2022.
She was born to William Albert Gramling and Margaret Ann Irwin Gramling in Woodstock, VA, on November 19, 1925. After graduating high school in 1943, Shirley became a nurse and met her husband, C.B. “Smitty” Highsmith in Miami, FL. They were married in 1949, and together had two children: Susanne and Carl.
After 20 years of service as a surgical nurse at Baptist Hospital of Miami, Shirley retired and traveled abroad with her husband before they moved to Merritt Island, FL, to be closer to their grandchildren. She lived 5 houses down the street from her daughter and son-in-law, and still walked down to bring them the paper every day up until the week before she passed.
Shirley was smart and independent with a compassionate spirit, always making sure everyone around her was taken care of. She had a green thumb and enjoyed spending time tending to her beautiful garden. She was an avid seamstress and loved to volunteer at her local church’s Mission Care Center twice a week making various blankets, stuffed toys, and other items for both adults and children. Her grandkids all have fond memories of baking together in Grandma’s kitchen.
Shirley was preceded in death by her parents William and Margaret, her siblings Billy, Huey, and Frances, her husband C.B., and her son Carl.
She is survived by her daughter, Susanne (Jake) Drennon, grandchildren Christy (Steve), Kadi (Jason), Wendy (Everett), and great-grandchildren Isabella, Gabriella, Luke and Sydney.
Her family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Mission Care Center at First Baptist Church of Merritt Island, where Shirley faithfully volunteered for 20 years.