BEAUFORT, SC — Shirley Stevens Mulligan, 95, died peacefully on December 9, 2011 at Riverside in Beaufort, South Carolina. She was born in Bridgeport, Connecticut on April 27, 1916, daughter of George Winfield Stevens and Amy Leigh Stevens. She was predeceased in 2004 by her husband of 68 years, Robert Ray Mulligan and five siblings.

Shirley attended William Smith College in Geneva, New York for one year prior to her marriage. She resumed her academic studies at Rhode Island College at the age of 42 and was elected President of her sophomore class. Shirley went on to earn a Masters Degree from Brown University and a PhD from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Her Doctoral dissertation was devoted to the Irish poet James Stephens and was published as The Poems of James Stephens in 2006. She was a professor in the English Department at Rhode Island College. Shirley and Bob retired to Ellenton, Florida. After Bob died, Shirley moved to Brunswick and lived at the Stevens Home for seven years. She recently moved to Beaufort, South Carolina. She was active in the Episcopal Church in Rhode Island, where she served as Director of Christian Education at St. Stephen’s Church in Providence, in Florida and at St. Paul’ s Church, Brunswick. Shirley loved to travel and made many friends wherever she lived and travelled.

Survivors include four children: Robert W. Mulligan (Jean) of Brunswick, Maine; Amy Leigh York (Lester) of Beaufort, South Carolina; James W. Mulligan of Haines City, Florida; Mary Ellen Whitlow ( Thomas) of Trumansburg, New York; 8 grandchildren and 19 great grandchildren.

A Memorial Service will be held at a later date and Interment will take place at Riverside Cemetery in Pawtucket, R.I. in the spring.

In thanks for Shirley’s life, gifts may be made to St. Paul’s Church, Brunswick or the charity of one’s choice.

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