William (Bill) Sheely, 81

Published 7:46 am Tuesday, November 21, 2017

William (Bill) Sheely 81, of Dover, Pennsylvania, formerly of Austin, Minnesota, and who operated the Beaver Trails Campground for over 30 years, passed away Nov. 17 in Florida, where he had spent the past eight winters.

William (Bill) Sheely, 81

He was born June 16, 1936, in Ollie, Iowa, and attended various schools in both Iowa and Minnesota in his youth. He graduated from Austin High School. Later, he took vo-tech classes in carpentry, agriculture, and sheet metal. He was married to Carol Mielke in 1958.

Bill loved to tell people he was born in a log cabin. After his family moved to the Austin area he lived on the family farm, east of Austin. Always a farm boy at heart, he eventually bought the 214 acres he grew up on. He loved farming and was for a time president of NFO in the area. He drove school bus for Southland School District for over 15 years. For many years he was a Boy Scout leader for Pack 124 in Austin. Because he loved the outdoors and was good with his hands he built Beaver Trails Campground, even cutting the trees down with help of his son Chuck — planing and nailing each board. He and Carol ran the park for 31 years, selling it in 2007. After traveling for two and a half years, they moved to Dover to be near their daughter, Sandra, while spending winters in Florida where grandson Matt went to college.

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He was preceded in death by his parents, Pearl Davis Sheely and C. Arthur Sheely; brother and sister-in-law, LaVerne and Cathy Sheely; brother Lowell; and brother-in-laws Lester Foss and Dwayne Bernard.

Survivors include one son, Charles, of Mora, Minnesota; one daughter, Sandra, Dover; one grandson, Matthew Wentz, Detroit, Michigan; brother Larry (Karen), Austin; sister-in-law, Wilma Sheely; sisters, Eloise Foss, Eleanor Johnson and Carolyn Bernard; and many nieces and nephews.

A celebration of life will be held at a later date.