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Sharron L. McElmeel (1942-2021)


Posted By: Ken Wright (email)
Date: 7/28/2021 at 19:01:08


Cedar Rapids

Sharron L. McElmeel, 78,

of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, passed away suddenly Monday, July 26, 2021, at Mercy Medical Center in Cedar Rapids. A visitation will be held from

4 to 7 p.m. Thursday, July 29, at Murdoch-Linwood Funeral Home & Cremation Service, Cedar Rapids. A private family service with burial at Linwood Cemetery will take place.

Sharron's life began where it ended, at Mercy Medical Center in Cedar Rapids on Sept. 13, 1942. The daughter of Leo and Helen (Miller) Hanson, she graduated from Maquoketa Valley High School in 1960. In high school, she met the love of her life and was married on Jan. 12, 1963, to E.J. "Jack" McElmeel. Sharron graduated from the University of Northern Iowa (formerly Iowa Teacher's College) with a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education and Mathematics K-8. She went on to obtain her Master of Arts in Library Science from the University of Iowa.

Sharron's passion in life was children's literature and reading advocacy, as well as the use of technology in the classroom. In addition to being an educator for more than 35 years for the Cedar Rapids Community School District, she was a nationally recognized expert in the field of Children's Literature. Sharron was an accomplished author of more than 35 published books, more than 70 published periodical articles and was a keynote/session speaker at over 35 national and regional reading/curriculum conferences. She was also the editor of the "Author and You" series of books for Libraries Unlimited. In addition, she was an instructor for many years at the University of Wisconsin Stout, University of Northern Iowa, Mount Mercy College and the Grant Wood Area Education Agency. Among some of Sharron's many honors and awards were; Iowa Reading Teacher of the Year (1987), Linn County Teacher of the Year (1996), and a nomination for Iowa Teacher of the Year (1997). Sharron was a force in the children's literature community and spent much of her adult life promoting childhood literacy. Sharron had many other business endeavors, a political candidacy (1998) and belonged to countless professional and community organizations.

Away from her professional life, Sharron loved spending time with her children, grandchildren and great-grandchild. Sharron was also an avid seamstress and quilter, loved to make crafts and was a great friend to many, many people. She was known for her selflessness, generosity and her never ending willingness to help others.

Sharron is survived and lovingly remembered by her husband, Jack; her six children and their spouses, Michael (Starr), Deborah (John), Thomas, Steven (Christina), Matthew, and Suzanne; her 10 grandchildren and spouses, Michael, Jade (Dan), Jay, Tarah, Mackenzie, E.J., Kylie, Kaydence, Marissa and Aubrey (Tyler); her great-grandchild, Pryor; her sister and brother, Joyce and Keith; her sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law, Joyce, Ron, Steve, Ellen, Carolyn; and several nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Leo and Helen; her parents-in-law, Mary and Elmer; her brother, Dwayne; her brothers-in-laws Jerry and Terry; and her sisters-in-law Rosemary and Belinda.

Memorials in Sharron's name may be directed to the family to support her favorite children's literacy programs.

Please share a memory of Sharron at www.murdochfuneralhome.com under obituaries.


Linn Obituaries maintained by Cindy Booth Maher.
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