The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

March 16, 2013

Pearl Martz Shannon, 83, Harrisburg


The Daily Item

— HARRISBURG — Pearl Martz Shannon, 83, of Harrisburg, passed peacefully on Monday, March 11, 2013, at Homeland Center, Harrisburg.

Affectionately known as ‘Spike’ to her friends, Pearl was born April 28, 1929, a daughter of the late Herbert and Pearl (Packer) Martz, of Sunbury. She married her childhood pal, Bob Shannon on March 23, 1951, who preceded her in death.

Pearl graduated from Sunbury High School in 1947 and Lock Haven State College in 1952 with a bachelor of science in elementary education.

Upon graduation from Lock Haven, Pearl began teaching in Media, while her husband attended medical school at Penn. Later, after raising her children, Pearl began substitute teaching, and then taught English as a second language in the Central Dauphin School District, making many new international friends in this part of her life.

Pearl took great pleasure in an independent, active lifestyle, whether it was playing tennis, hiking, or traveling to distant countries in her younger years, or, when the frailties of age slowed her, viewing the snow geese at Middle Creek from her wheelchair.

She was a life-long and competitive bridge player, and also enjoyed playing mah jongg, serving Meals on Wheels and assisting with the Devonshire Fair at Colonial Park United Church of Christ, where she was a member for 48 years. ‘Spike’ represented Sunbury’s Third Ward at high school reunions, and participated for over 65 years in a round-robin letter with several of her Lock Haven classmates, with whom she participated in many annual reunions.  

Her children and grandchildren were a source of great pride, and she always enjoyed hearing about their most recent accomplishments and travels.

She is survived by one sister, Nancy Dorman; two sons and daughters-in-law, Kevin and Cindy Shannon, of Harrisburg, and Robert and Catherine Shannon, of Boalsburg; one daughter and son-in-law, Kathleen and Robert Sarver, of Dublin Ohio; four grandsons Matthew Shannon and wife, Samantha, of Philadelphia, Stephen Shannon, of Heidenheim, Germany, and Benjamin and Lucas Sarver, both of Dublin; and numerous nieces and nephews.

She joins her late husband Robert E. Shannon; two sisters, Shirley Eckman and Jeanette Snyder; and two brothers, Herbert and Paul Martz.

Pearl’s family would like to thank the caregivers who assisted during her last years of independent living, especially Sylvia Barder, as well as the compassionate staff at Homeland Center where she spent the past few months.

A visitation with the family will be held from 10 to 11 a.m. Thursday at Colonial Park United Church of Christ, 5000 Devonshire Road, Harrisburg, followed by a memorial service at 11.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Colonial Park UCC, or Homeland Center, 1901 N. Fifth St., Harrisburg, PA 17102.