Debby Shaw


After 66 years full of love, family and faith, Debby Shaw passed away on Friday, March 17, 2017. The longtime Columbus resident died peacefully after a short bout with cancer—a disease she had bravely defeated once before in her life—at 8:11 a.m. at Our Hospice of South Central Indiana Inpatient Facility.

In her final weeks, she was surrounded by dozens of visitors from near and far, all of whom visited Debby because of the profound impact she made on their lives.

Deborah Lorraine Shaw was born September 19, 1950, in Huntington, West Virginia, the loving daughter of William David Conard Sr. and the former Betty L. Miller. She was the granddaughter of her beloved mawmaw Blema Myrtle Conard.

She married Terry Shaw on June 12, 1971. Together they raised two children, both of whom graduated college, launched successful careers and married.

Her true life calling was children. She spent the past four years doting on her beloved grandchild, William, who was named after her late brother and best friend, Bill. She was also a longtime preschool teacher at Children’s Morning Out at Asbury United Methodist Church. Several former daycare students, now well into adulthood, visited Debby at the hospital in her final weeks—a true testament to her lasting impact on Columbus’ next generation.

Faith was a cornerstone of Debby’s life. She was a faithful and longtime member of North Christian Church. In her free time, she enjoyed scrapbooking and crocheting.

Survivors include her husband of 45 years, Terry; children, Colin (Michelle) Shaw of Lakewood, Colorado and Liz (Scott) Fontaine of Alexandria, Virginia; a grandson, William Ameha Selassie Fontaine; a sister, Linda Boyd of Mansfield, Ohio; and several nieces and nephews.

Debby was preceded in death by her parents and her brother, William David Conard Jr.

A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday, March 25, at North Christian Church with the Rev. Tonja Gerardy officiating. Guests are strongly encouraged to wear purple — Debby’s favorite color — to the services. Family and friends may gather for visitation from noon Saturday at the church. Inurnment will follow the service at North Christian Church Memorial Garden, and then a reception will be held at the church.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorial contributions be made to Our Hospice of South Central Indiana, 2626 E. 17th St., Columbus, Indiana 47201.

Online condolences and special memories may be shared with the Shaw family at