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Shirley Ann Metz Beyer


Shirley passed away at age 90 on January 14, 2023, in Sun City West after a brief illness.
Shirley was born in Mitchell, South Dakota, and raised in Chicago. She attended Hirsch High School there and Northwestern University in Evanston. She received an MA-Ed from the National College of Education. She served as a teacher for 25 years in Dolton, Illinois, and Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, working with gifted and learning-disabled pupils.
Shirley married her high school sweetheart, Paul Metz, in 1952. While living in Florida and Cuba, they had two children, Stephen and Lorna. Following Paul’s naval service, the family moved back to Illinois and founded a photography studio in South Holland. Shirley and Paul divorced in 1972.
She married Adam Beyer and then moved to Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. Shirley and Adam loved the outdoors and spent 33 summers on Rainy Lake, Ontario, living at their remote cabins where they had met. They spent their winters in Sun City, Arizona. Shirley and Adam also traveled around the USA with their RVs, and she was proud that she had been to all 50 states.
Shirley had considerable artistic and musical talents. She was a wonderful calligrapher and spent 25 years teaching calligraphy. She also produced original greeting cards and sold them at senior resort parks in the Phoenix area. At the age of 80, she revived the considerable piano skills of her youth and discovered the joy of making music on a modern keyboard. In addition, she especially enjoyed her trips to Logan, Utah, to attend their annual summer music festivals.
Shirley is survived by her son Stephen (Diane Clayton) Metz, daughter Lorna (Jim Ralston) Metz Ralston, siblings Ralph (Elaine) Van Kerkhove and Donna (Dave) Zellner, stepson Alan (Gail) Beyer, five step-grandchildren, and six step-great-grandchildren. Shirley was preceded in death by husband Paul Metz, husband Adam Beyer, her parents Raymond and Madeline Van Kerkhove, sisters Marie Carroll and Virginia Van Kerkhove, and stepdaughter Judy Stevenson.
A memorial service will be held on Thursday, February 23rd at 11:00 A.M. at the American Lutheran Church of Sun City in Sun City, Arizona.