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Shirley A. Aretz, 84

Shirley Ann (Bailey) Aretz, age 84, of Cologne, died Thursday, July 21, 2016, at the Lutheran Home in Belle Plaine.

She was born July 27, 1931, on the family farm in Hancock Township, Carver County, to James and Mary Ellen (Weldon) Bailey. Shirley was the ninth of 11 children. She was baptized and confirmed at St. John’s Catholic Church in rural Belle Plaine.

Shirley attended Belle Plaine public school through the 10th grade. She worked at a sewing factory in Chaska until she married.

Shirley was united in marriage to Cyril A. Aretz June 24, 1950, at St. John’s Catholic Church in rural Belle Plaine. They were blessed with 10 children.

Shirley owned and operated the Aretz’s Concrete Lawn Ornaments business and enjoyed the challenge of painting the lawn ornaments.

Shirley and Cyril bought the Aretz family farm in 1962, and farmed until 2006. They sold the farm and moved into a new townhome in the village of Cologne in April 2006.

After Cyril’s death, Shirley became a snowbird for two winters in San Tan Valley, AZ. She greatly enjoyed her time there with her two sisters, and learned how to make rosaries.

During her retirement, Shirley also enjoyed Christian music, polka dancing, going to the casinos, Sudoku and crossword puzzles, reading books, and spending time with family and friends.

Shirley was proud of her Irish heritage and believed charity begins at home. She was a faithful member of St. Bernard’s Catholic Church and the Catholic Aid Association.

In addition to her husband, Cyril, Shirley was preceded in death by her daughters, Karen Aretz and Denise Bebo; parents; a brother, Dennis Bailey; and sisters Isabel Farrell, Kathryn Bigaouette, Irene Madden, Rosemary Berger, Helen Meyer, Elizabeth Hammers, Teresa Fritz, and Mary Fahey.

She is survived by her children, Francis (Bonnie) Aretz of Oronogo, MO, Patricia Metcalf of Leesburg, FL, Colleen Schilz of Chaska, Susan (Stan) Bebo of Hutchinson, David Aretz of Waconia, Russell Aretz of Cologne, Roy (Carol) Aretz of Lakeville, and Anna (Steven) Renne of Belle Plaine; 25 grandchildren; and 28 great-grandchildren.

Shirley is also survived by her sister, Josephine (Merlin) Battcher of San Tan Valley AZ; sisters-in-law Dorothy Braunworth of Norwood Young America, and Leona Aretz of Chaska; and many nieces and nephews.

Mass of Christian Burial took place Tuesday, July 26, at 11 a.m. at St. Bernard’s Catholic Church in Cologne with Fr. Gregory Abbott officiating. There was visitation two hours prior to the Mass at the church, and interment was in the church cemetery.

Casket bearers were Shirley’s grandsons, Michael Aretz, Alan Bebo, Ryan Bebo, Matthew Bebo, Mathias Weinzierl, Christopher Aretz, and Dakota Aretz.

Arrangements were with Johnson Funeral Home in Waconia; www.johnsonfh.com.

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