Obituary of Shirley L. Wall
Shirley Elizabeth Layne Wall, who lived at The Long Community and Brethren Village in Lancaster County, PA, died early in the morning on Monday, June 19, 2023. She was 92.
Shirley was born in Washington, DC, on March 11, 1931, and grew up with her three siblings, Virginia, Carol, and John. Her father, Claris Layne, was a civilian draftsperson for the Navy. Her mother, Eleanor, was a homemaker.
After a childhood in Washington, DC, Shirley started an extended “tour” of the United States and Japan in 1949, when she married Orlando A. Wall, a newly commissioned Air Force officer. His postings to new assignments required that the family move every one to four years. Daughter Karen was born in Japan while Orlando flew planes in the Korean War; son Roger was born in Massachusetts while Orlando attended graduate school.
At each new posting, no matter how short or long, Shirley was the backbone of the family. She created a safe, nurturing home for her children and a refuge for her husband, who worked long hours and traveled often. Her Christian faith guided her in meeting the needs of her immediate family and in maintaining its connection to the larger extended family.
Upon retirement from the military, Shirley and Orlando moved to Camp Hill, PA, where Shirley realized her desire to combine family, place, and church into one. They lived in their Camp Hill home for 43 years, with Orlando passing away in 2007. The home was often the scene of large family gatherings and the destination for children and grandchildren arriving from out of town. Shirley and Orlando were active members of the West Shore Baptist church, of which her parents, Claris and Eleanor Layne, had been charter members.
Shirley is survived by her daughter, Karen Thomas and husband Harold and her son, Roger Wall and wife Jan Jaffe. Shirley’s grandchildren and great-grandchildren are Eric Thomas, wife Laura, and their son Jake; Evan Thomas, wife Julia, and their children Madelyn and Ethan; Paul Thomas; Laura Pauls-Thomas and husband Andrew; Barret Wall.
In addition, Shirley is survived by her sisters, Virginia Layne, Carol Sweigard, her sister-in-law, Jean Layne, and many beloved nieces and nephews. Her brother, John Layne, died in January 2023; her brother-inlaw, Alfred Sweigard, in March 2022.
A public memorial service will celebrate Shirley’s life on Sunday, July 16, at 3 pm at the West Shore Baptist Church, 2025 Market St., Camp Hill, PA. Interment will be a private ceremony held at Rolling Green Cemetery at the convenience of the family.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a memorial donation to the West Shore Baptist Church Walton-Wall Scholarship Fund for students to attend summer Bible camp.