Kathryn O. Shirley, age 76, of Wheat Ridge, CO, formerly of Dassel, died Saturday, March 13, 2010, at the Hospice of St. John’s in Denver.
She was born Aug. 4, 1933, on the home farm of James and Flora Olmstead, located on the south side of Washington Lake, Meeker County.
Kathryn attended District 24 country school through the seventh grade. The family then moved to Dassel, after their home was destroyed by fire.
Kathy graduated from Dassel High School in 1946, the class salutatorian.
After graduation, she moved to St. Cloud, where she was employed at Rex Granite Company, designing patterns for engravers doing tombstones.
She then moved to Denver, CO in 1954, where she was employed, and became involved in the church youth group, at Calvary Baptist Church.
It was there that she met her husband of 54 years, Bob Shirley. They were blessed with a son, David Robert, and a daughter, Jeanette Marie.
After the children were old enough, Kathryn went back to work as secretary and editor for the regional offices of American Baptist Churches of the Rocky Mountains, where she was employed for the next 23 years.
Kathy was an avid reader and researcher of genealogy, and became a charter member of the Foothill Genealogical Society of Denver.
After years of visiting courthouses, cemeteries, and older family members, she began to fill in the gaps in the family tree. All this work culminated in her pride and joy two published histories of the Olmstead and Montgomery families. These valued gifts were shared with her siblings and their children, and were much appreciated.
Kathryn is survived by her husband, Bob Shirley of Wheat Ridge, CO; son David Robert (Malinda) Shirley of Kent, WA; grandchildren Daniel and Krista; daughter Jeanette Lloyd; grandchildren Michelle, Sean, and Jason; and great-grandchildren Jonathan and Isaak of Salt Lake City, UT; sisters May Olmstead of Litchfield, and Betty Johnson of Dassel; and many loving nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents; and a sister, Ethel Zeppelin.
Memorial services took place March 18 in Denver. Interment will take place at a Dassel cemetery later this spring.