Shelley Denise Spencer

January 31, 1960 ~ December 25, 2022 (age 62) 62 Years Old


Shelley Denise Spencer, 62, of Ellensburg, passed away on Sunday, December 25, 2022, while surrounded by her loving family.  A memorial service is planned for the spring to celebrate Shelley’s life.

Shelley is preceded in death by her father, Hugh Spencer, and her grandmother, Margaret Spencer.  She is survived by her beloved wife, Ann Riley, her children Sean Spencer Riley and Alayna Margaret Spencer-Riley, her mother Marian Spencer, and stepsisters Tara and Gemille.

Shelley was born in California and grew up in Kent, WA where she was raised by her father and grandmother.  In her teens, the family moved to Cle Elum, WA.  She graduated from Cle Elum High School and went to college in Spokane.  She then worked in Alaska.  After that, she returned to Ellensburg and went to Central Washington University to pursue a degree in accounting.

Shelley worked at the Public Health Department in Ellensburg and then worked at Central Washington University.  Her most recent position at Central Washington University was office manager and assistant to the chair of the Engineering Technologies, Safety, and Construction Department.

Shelley often said that she never thought she would have the opportunity to be married or have children.  But that changed when she met her wife, Ann.  Her greatest happiness in life was her family and she enjoyed raising her two children, Sean and Alayna.  She participated in every aspect of their lives, helping them with school projects, coaching them in sports, and providing advice and support as they faced life’s challenges.

Shelley was a no-nonsense kind of person.  She could be very direct when it came to an opinion, but she was also deeply compassionate.  She showed great kindness to others and had a soft spot when it came to animals (She often was the instigator when it came to adopting a new family pet).

Shelley was a survivor.  Her family says she was like a cat with nine lives.  The challenges she was able to overcome in the past helped her see each new day as a gift to be appreciated and cherished.  She was a fighter and worked hard to overcome this last illness.

We love you, Shelley.  You will forever be in our hearts.

Arrangements have been entrusted to Johnston & Williams Funeral Home of Ellensburg.  Online condolences may be left for the family at


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