Carroll Shelby’s oldest son Michael came forward after Shelby’s passing with a form signed by the man himself stating that he wished to cremated, with his ashes being divided up between his three children and a plot in Texas. However, Carroll Shelby’s estranged wife Cleo Shelby claimed that the document presented by Michael Shelby was a forgery and that she had her own paperwork which detailed what Mr. Shelby wanted done with his remains after passing. Both groups lawyered up and went to court over who would receive the automotive legend’s remains.
Traditionally, when a man passes away his remains are award to his wife for burial preparations but Cleo and Carroll Shelby had been separated since 2010 when Mr. Shelby filed for divorce. Shelby also filed for an annulment of their marriage in April 2012, stating that his wife had misled him on a variety of things which led him to want out of the marriage. Based on those two pieces of information, it was very clear that Carroll Shelby did not want to spend any more time with Cleo so his children stepped in to claim his remains after he passed but Cleo wouldn’t allow it – insisting that she was still his wife because neither the divorce nor the annulment were ever completed.
Unfortunately, this story doesn’t have a particularly happy ending as the two parties have agreed to have Carroll Shelby’s body cremated and split five ways. With this result, each of his three children will receive a portion of his ashes while the plot in Texas will be adorned with the fourth portion. The fifth and final portion of Shelby’s ashes will go to his estranged wife Cleo and while his three children are not happy that a portion of their father’s remains will be sent off with a woman with whom he clearly wanted to be away from but the three Shelby children are just happy that they can finally commence in completing his finals wishes. You would have to wonder why a woman who Carroll Shelby was trying to avoid would even want a portion of the ashes but in the long run – at least the real family of Carroll Shelby can move on with their lives.
This provides a sad reminder to everyone out there to make sure that your plans for the afterlife are taken care of with legal documentation as you don’t want to end up with a portion of your remains be separated and sent away with someone you didn’t trust in life.