Wirt Johnson (W.J.,"Tink") Shelton, 98, of Bradenton passed away September 17, 2020.
Tink was a 3rd generation Manatee County resident with deep ties to the area. He was born at home on 27th Street West. He was a proud newspaper boy for the Bradenton Herald—a paper he read cover-to-cover every day—and he could still proudly recite the route he bicycled. He was a graduate of Bradenton High School in 1940; serving in the U.S. Navy during World War II in San Francisco as an aviation machinist's mate. Tink graduated from the University of Florida in 1949 and returned home to work with his father, O. W. at Shelton Insurance Agency.
He married the former Jean Anthony in 1949, who preceded him in death, as well as brothers Henry and Robert.
At his death, Tink was the longest serving member of First United Methodist church where he served on the Administrative Council. At 97, he was still driving to church each and every Sunday to worship and socialize.
Tink was a former member of the Bradenton Yacht Club and served as its treasurer. He served on the Bradenton Downtown Development Authority and was a faithful member of Bradenton Kiwanis. Tink was also a supporter of the Boy Scouts.
In his later years he took joy in providing photographs, anecdotes, and old maps to the Manatee County Historical Records Library in hopes to enrich local history, but mostly he loved talking about his town he knew so well. Tink took much interest in the goings-on of his five grandchildren, who live both near and far, and would send colorful emails asking about the weather, their jobs, and would report on the happenings of life in Bradenton.
Survivors include his daughter Elaine (John) Sands and son David (Ann) Shelton; five grandchildren Christina (Scott) Bambach, Catherine (Dominic) Forth; Neal (Melissa), Sarah, and Andrew Shelton; and four great-grandchildren.
Visitation will be at Shannon Funeral Homes Westview Chapel at 5610 Manatee Ave West on Tuesday, September 22 from 5-7 pm and funeral service will be held at First United Methodist Church on Wednesday, September 23 at 11:00 am. Internment at Forgartyville Cemetery will be private.
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