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Obituaries: Cook; Ireton

Shawn Cook

Shawn Cook: November 29, 1952 — January 17, 2023

Shawn D Cook, 70, of Gillette, Wyoming, passed away at home due to prostate cancer on January 17, 2023.

Shawn was born in Oceanside, California, on November 29, 1952, to Dudley and Mary Collins Cook. Born into a Marine Corps family, Shawn also lived in post-WWII Japan; in Dumfries, Virginia; Sharon, Massachusetts; and Embden, Maine, before venturing to the University of Wyoming, where he received degrees in Zoology and Botany, along with a certificate in Secondary Education. He later became a Registered Nurse at Gillette Campus.

After a tour as an Army medic in Germany, Shawn met Vicki Semlek at the University of Wyoming and married at St. Matthew’s Church in Gillette in 1984. Both taught high school in Weslaco, Texas, for several years.  Shawn went on to work as a nurse in hospice, behavioral health, and corrections.     

 Shawn was known for his empathy and kindness to all creatures.  He enjoyed recording changes in nature of his beloved Wyoming and was a keen observer of nature’s cycles, long before environmental concerns were popular. He was a minimalist before it was fashionable, a male nurse before the need was critical, and a solace to the sick, an advocate for the mentally ill, and a guardian for the dying.

Shawn is survived by his wife, Vicki; son, Hugh; brother Michael Cook of Sydney, Australia; sister Maria Collins (Michael) of Brookfield, Wisconsin; brother O’Bannon Cook (Charlotte) of Georgetown, Texas; and sister Margaret Rubenacker (Larry) of Canton, Massachusetts. Numerous nieces and nephews of three generations will remember their uncle.

He wanted to thank all those throughout his life that gave it happiness and meaning.

A funeral mass will be held at St. Matthew’s Catholic Church on February 2, 2023 at 11 am.  Burial will follow at Pleasant Valley Cemetery.

Shawn was known as a kind person so in lieu of flowers, please consider a random act of kindness. Memorials and condolences may be sent in care of Walker Funeral Home 410 Medical Arts Court, Gillette, WY 82716. Condolences may also be expressed at www.walkerfuneralgillette.com


Mary Alice Deal Ireton

Mary Alice Deal Ireton: 1942 – 2023

Mary Alice Deal Ireton of Douglas, Wyoming, age 80, passed away peacefully on Thursday, January 19, 2023, at Central Wyoming Hospice in Casper Wyoming, following a brief illness.                                         

Mary Alice was born on December 23, 1942 in Dolores, Colorado. 

She graduated from Dolores High School, Dolores, CO in 1960.   

Mary Alice is survived by her mother, Mary Ann Deal of Farmington, New Mexico, brother James Deal (Shirlene), Farmington, New Mexico, and daughter, Elizabeth Elliott, of Cortez, CO.    Grandchildren, Brandie Dawn Jones, Barton and Benton Nelson, Amber Hoover, Danielle Kirk, Nathan Nelson, Kristen Nelson, Zachary Taylor, and she leaves behind 11 great grandchildren. 

Part of her special extended family also includes Michelle Martin, her dear friend Craig Corley and numerous nieces, nephews and a wealth of other friends and neighbors. 

Mary Alice was predeceased by her father, Ralph L Deal in October 2003, brother, Robert L Deal, February 2015, husband Cecil Ireton August 2015, and son Byron Nelson in September 2022. 

Mary Alice loved playing Bingo, bowling, Words With Friends, collecting owls, and spending time with family and friends. 

In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to Central Wyoming Hospice, 319 S Wilson St, Casper, WY 82601 or any donation towards breast cancer research on her behalf is appreciated.

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