Shelley Elinor Morss.

Shelley Elinor Morss, 90

May 3, 2024

Shelley Elinor Morss, 90, a Concord resident for over 65 years, passed away in the comfort of her own home with family on April 25, 2024.

Shelley was born to Dr. Chadwick Christine and Florence Anglund Christine of Maysville, Kentucky. She was a true “southern belle” who attended William & Mary to study literature. Her brother introduced Shelley to fellow Yale student Charles A. Morss; they were married when Shelley was 19. Shelley and Charlie raised their four children in Concord.

Shelley proudly lived her life on her own terms, and her passion for gardening, music, conservation, art, and health was reflected throughout her years in Concord. She volunteered at Emerson Hospital; she was an advocate for healthy Concord drinking water; she fought to protect Concord’s landmarks with the Save Our Heritage organization; she sang with the Concord Women’s Chorus; and she performed with the Savoyard Light Opera and the Concord Players. Shelley was an active 45-year member of the Concord Garden Club, and her love for gardening was reflected throughout her home, personally designed and gracefully landscaped in the Minute Man National Historic Park.

Shelley fought to preserve Walden Pond from threatening development and pollution. Initially unable to gain traction, Shelley continued to gently raise her Southern voice until a fellow Southerner, Don Henley, personally arrived to walk the woods with her. Soon thereafter, in 1990, Henley founded The Walden Woods Project; thus, Shelley’s grassroots movement to preserve Walden Pond rose to gain the national attention it deserved.

Shelley was a talented painter who worked with oils and watercolors. Her works were displayed throughout her elegant home. Shelley’s tangible successes in bringing light to her artistry and design speaks to Shelley’s sparkling essence; she shared her joie de vivre until the day she died through her gentle — yet brilliant — beams of artistry, serendipity, beauty, laughter, and her love for her family and friends.

Shelley is survived by three children: Stephen Morss, Lyza Morss, and Dr. Alexander Morss, and seven grandchildren. She is predeceased by her eldest son, Dr. Charles A. Morss III, her brother Chadwick Christine, and her sister Patricia Christine Perrine.

A private celebration of life will be held in the spring.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to The Walden Woods Project.

Arrangements are entrusted to Dee Funeral Home & Cremation Service of Concord.  To share a memory or to offer a condolence in her online guestbook, visit