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Shirley S. Lawrenson


Shirley was born in Keam’s Canyon, AZ, on the Hopi Reservation on August 23, 1934.

Shirley and her identical twin sister Sherry were the daughters of Dell G. and Gladys “Hap” Shockley.

Dell worked for the USDA Soil Conservation Service, and the family moved frequently throughout the West until settling in Portland, OR in 1944.

Shirley attended Grant High School (in Portland) and graduated from Oregon State University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology with a minor in Education. At OSU, she met her future husband Donald H. Lawrenson (also of Portland). Shirley and Don were married shortly after her graduation from OSU in 1956; they enjoyed nearly 64 years of marriage. They resided in Newtown, CT for 32 years, until their retirement to Sun City West, AZ in 1999.

In Newtown, Shirley chaired the Commission on Aging and subsequently served as Registrar of Voters. She was also proud to serve the General Federation of Women’s Clubs on the State and local levels in both Connecticut and Arizona for over 55 years.

Shirley is predeceased by her parents, Dell G. and Gladys “Hap” Shockley and sister, Sherry D. Garwood. She is survived by her husband, Donald; sons, Kenneth (Julie) and David (Lisa); and her grandchildren, Jessica Landrum, and Seth and Sierra Lawrenson.

Everyone who met Shirley loved her, as she treated everyone with respect and friendship. She had infectious laughter, and she exuded grace, dignity, and poise. She was a community servant, and she demonstrated the art of being an intelligent, elegant woman. She loved ballet, classical music, art, and fashion. She was a sweet, dedicated grandmother who was loved by her grandchildren.

Above all, Shirley was deeply devoted to her best friend, Donald. Shirley and Donald shared a passion for travel and had the pleasure and privilege of visiting all seven continents, 71 countries, and all 50 States.

She will be missed and remembered by all who knew her.