In Memoriam: Shirley Schragl
A letter from Jeff Waller to the Press Club of New Orleans:
Most of you are not old enough to remember my parents, Alex and Shirley Waller. I am writing this to inform you of my mother’s passing, as there are certainly still those around you that will remember our family. You may, if you wish, use this email as you see fit, or forward this to whomever you think it should go. My hope is that you and The Times-Picayune might honor my mother and father with a small story about them.
All four of us; father, mother, and two brothers worked at the Picayune at one time or another. Mother, in the Classified Ads Department, and the two brothers as copyboys for the Display Advertising Department. My father worked at the Times Picayune/States Item for 33 years, starting on the Night City Desk. Over the years he worked his way up to Business Manager, and at the time of his death in 1970, was Vice President of the United Fund trustees, President of the Press Club, director of Total Community Action and president of the Louisiana daily Newspaper Publishers Association. The New Orleans Press Club still honors my father with a journalism award bearing his name.
My mother, Shirley Lewis Waller Schragl passed away this morning in Booneville, Mississippi where she was a resident. She was 94. My mother died in her sleep on September 21, 2015.
She was born in Newark, New Jersey. She graduated from Columbia High School in Maplewood, New Jersey. She served in the Women’s Army Corps in Liberal, Kansas as a logistics officer during WWII where she met her husband Alex Stevens Waller, Jr. who served there as a journalist. Both held the rank of Lieutenant. Mama’s picture was one of the Army recruiting posters (which I still have).
Survivors include her son Jeffrey Waller, his wife, Ann Waller and many loving nieces and nephews on her sister’s side of the family. She was predeceased by her husbands Alex Waller and Anthony Schragl, her oldest son Stephen Waller, her brother Geoffrey Lewis and her sister Ruth D’Alessandro.
Alex and Shirley resided first in New Orleans and later in Metairie, Louisiana, where they raised two sons, Stephen Robert Waller and Jeffrey Wayne Waller. After Alex’s death in 1970, Shirley moved to Santa Barbara, California. She met and married Anthony Schragl. After his death she moved to Marietta, Georgia to be near her sister Ruth D’Alessandro, and finally to Booneville to be near her surviving son Jeffrey. No matter where she lived, she always had a cozy home, a lovely garden and her dogs and cats. Her church and faith were very important to her and she loved the people around her and made friends easily. She was a member of the Booneville Church of Christ.