Shelby was born on May 14, 1996 and passed from this life on February 28, 2012. He leaves behind two canine siblings, Stanton and Madison. Stanton stayed by his side while he took his last breath and rested his head on his body after he passed.
Shelby was a Bichon Frise and my beloved companion. He was named after the famous Civil War historian Shelby Foote, whose work I greatly admired.
Shelby turned out to be similar to his namesake insofar as he was every bit a Southern gentleman who was known for his kindness to strangers (both human and four-legged) and his merry disposition. I always said he had a better personality than I did, and this was true in many ways.
He taught me how to enjoy life on a deeper level. He was gentle, endlessly curious, and playful, and he loved life. He loved to go through my grocery bags to see if I had gotten him a toy, and he loved to open presents wrapped in tissue paper.
He knew how to live and savor the moment. He loved a good walk, a good nap, and a good meal (grilled Tilapia was a favorite).
When he was younger, he could play fetch for hours. In the summer, I would take the long way home so he could safely put his head out the window and enjoy the wind on his face. He brought joy to those who knew him.
My hands let go of his body, but my heart will forever hold on to my memories of him and of the joy that he brought me. He was a gift, and I am grateful to have had the privilege of journeying with him for almost sixteen years. I love you, Mr. Shelby.