Death of Shirley Cox

Shirley and Emmett Cox and family as missionaries in Sierra Leone.

Shirley Cox, 90, former missionary in Sierra Leone and UB pastor’s wife, passed away December 28, 2018, in Huntington, Ind.

Shirley Cox

Visitation will be held 3-7 pm on Thursday, January 3, 2019. Location: Bailey-Love Mortuary, 35 West Park Drive, Huntington, IN 46750. A memorial service will be held at a later date.

Shirley grew up in a United Brethren pastor’s home in Ontario, the daughter of Rev. Glenn and Lillian Betterly. At Huntington College, she met Emmett Cox, and they were married on August 14, 1948. They both graduated from HC in 1951, Shirley with a degree in Education. Emmett went on to graduate from the HC seminary.

Shirley and her family were missionaries in Sierra Leone over a 20-year period beginning in 1957. During those years Emmett served as a high school principal, business manager, general superintendent, primary school secretary, and field secretary. Shirley kept busy with her own various roles, including matron of the Minnie Mull girls’ home and teacher at Centennial Secondary School.

In 1969, General Conference elected Emmett as General Secretary of Missions. He filled that role for four years. Then he and Shirley pastored churches for the next 30 years:

  • 1976-1984: Victory UB church (Burbank, Calif.).
  • 1984-1985: First UB church (Lake Havasu City, Ariz.).
  • 1985-1992: Willshire UB church (Willshire, Ohio).
  • 1992-2003: Six Mile Church, a non-UB congregation in Bluffton, Ind.

In retirement, Shirley and Emmett served short-term as volunteers in Myanmar.

Shirley and Emmett enjoyed 66 years of marriage before his death in 2015. They had four children: son Douglas, daughters Diane and Darlene, and foster son Billy Simbo, from Sierra Leone.

Preferred memorials are to UB Global, the United Brethren in Christ mission organization. Send in care of Bailey-Love Mortuary, 35 West Park Drive, Huntington, Indiana, 46750.

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