There is something special about the love of a mother. From a natural instinct to care for and nurture others to the undying devotion that drives them to give sacrificially, mothers embody the true essence of volunteering and making a difference in the lives of others. Laura Shirey is a true representative of this amazing quality.
“As a mother and a wife, much of my life is devoted to giving of myself for the benefit of my family,” Mrs. Shirey said. “When that [same devotion] is extended to a community, everyone benefits.”
Mrs. Shirey is a dedicated volunteer with First Baptist Church in Canton, where she retired as a pastoral assistant after eight years of service. She takes pride in assisting with programs such as vacation Bible school, the handbell choir, leading a Bible study, hosting weddings, and helping with the Mothers of Preschoolers group.
“When I was employed at the church, it was very rewarding to see so many people behind the scenes giving of themselves when there was a need,” she said. “Since retiring, I have been involved in the Women’s League of Canton. This group of women devote themselves to help our community by way of scholarships for graduating seniors and also an outreach at Christmas time to the foster children in our community. This is such a rewarding experience for everyone and I am pleased to be part of this organization.”
Mrs. Shirey also serves on the committee to nominate the executive board of the Baptist General Convention of Texas, which has exposed her to yet another example of volunteers who serve for a “greater cause.”
Born in Mena, Arkansas, Mrs. Shirey is a graduate of South Garland High School in Garland, Texas, and attended Eastfield College in Mesquite, Texas. She began working for National Mortgage Company of America in Dallas, where she met her husband, Ben Shirey. The couple lived in Longview, Texas for 12 years before settling down in Canton 26 years ago to work and rear their four children. The Shireys are now retired and spend much of their time with family and nurturing their six grandchildren.
After growing up in the busy suburbs of Dallas, Mrs. Shirey said she truly loves the people and pace of life in Canton.
“I can’t imagine living anywhere else,” she said. “It’s been such a blessing to get to know so many people in the community.”