Shirley M. Preston


Shirley M. Preston, age 92, of Johnstown passed away
peacefully at her home on Thursday, October 7, 2021.
She was born in Johnstown, New York on August 29,
1929, to Alvin and Eva Christman Knoblauch.
She was married to Ronald C. Preston of Johnstown
on September 11, 1948, at the First Baptist Church in
Johnstown. They celebrated 72 years of marriage, prior
to his passing on April 26, 2021. She is survived by
her son Larry (Carol) Preston and daughter Linda Van
Slyke, both of Johnstown, as well as by her grandsons
Brett Preston, Grant (Kimberly) Preston, Christopher
Preston, Matthew (Lisa) Van Slyke and Nathan Van
Slyke, and her eight great-grandchildren: Julia Preston,
Abigail Preston, Jack Preston, Hailey Preston,
Cole Preston, Jackson Van Slyke, Marlia Van Slyke and
Preston Van Slyke. In addition to her husband and her
parents, she was predeceased by her sister, Reta Place.
She is also survived by many nieces and nephews.
Shirley worked for many years in local banks, retiring
in 1991 as the head teller of the Johnstown Branch
of First American Bank on the Johnstown arterial, a
position that she greatly enjoyed, and which allowed
her the opportunity to make many new friends. She
also sold Avon products for many years. Her hobbies
included crafts, crocheting, gardening, reading, and
raising African violets. And you would never get between
her and a garage sale.
Shirley was of the Protestant faith and a long-time
member of the Johnstown Reformed Church. She was
descended from the Palatine Germans who settled
this area in the early 1700’s, which partly accounted
for her strong will and stubborn streak. She never
took No for an answer. She was a proud alum of the
Johnstown High School Class of 1948, and she greatly
enjoyed assisting in the planning of her class reunions
and the frequent luncheons which celebrated the lifelong
friendships that were very important to her. She
had many friends over the years, but was especially
close to Mainie Lombardoni, Arlene Sitterly, and
Georgianna Edwards.
Shirley’s family would like to give special thanks
to her caregivers (Michelle, Carole, Breanna, Kim,
Kathy, Jodi, Thurlah, and Bobbie Jo) for their thoughtful
and compassionate support. Special thanks also to
the Rev. R.W. Williams for bringing spiritual comfort
and blessings to Shirley and her family over the past
several months.
A memorial service will be held at a future date at
the convenience of the family.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Shirley’s
memory may be made to Mountain Valley Hospice,
108 Steele Avenue, Gloversville, NY, or to the
Johnstown Reformed Church.
Arrangements are being entrusted to the A.G. Cole
Funeral Home, 215 E. Main Street, Johnstown NY
Condolences to the family may be made online by
visiting our website at

By Leader-Herald

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