Shirley M. Olson

Shirley M. Olson, 82 of New London, died March 30, 2021 at Carris Care Center and Therapy Suites in Willmar.  A public visitation will be from 4-7 p.m. Monday, April 5, 2021 at Peace Lutheran Church in New London.  A private interment will be at Lebanon Cemetery in New London.  Arrangements are with the Johnson Funeral Home in New London.

Shirley Marie Olson was born April 13, 1938, the eldest child of Carl and Eunice (Hagen) Manson.  As a sister to 5 siblings, she became a natural caregiver.  She attended several schools in the area.  She became a role model for women as she obtained her GED and then graduated from Ridgewater College as her youngest children were in school. 

On March 17, 1956, she married Orlean (Ole) Olson at Lebanon Lutheran church in New London. They made their home in New London and not only raised 5 children, but helped form the lives of many other children, foster and others. 

Her work outside the home included positions with Somody Supply and a long career with Kandiyohi County, retiring from the County Recorders Office in 2001.

 Shirley’s greatest joy was children!  She derived great meaning and satisfaction in teaching children at church, confirmation, being a mentor and volunteer for New London-Spicer schools.  She enjoyed the traveling she did with her husband, kids and sisters and brother.  Together, she and Orlean traveled to all 50 states, Canada, Mexico, Jamaica and several European countries. She loved keeping up with her friends from high school the “56 Chicks”!

She said she didn’t cheat, but who could beat her at a game of Cribbage, Whist or Farkle?  She loved to dance.  She loved to laugh.  She checked up on her neighbors, offering an ear of support or anything else someone might need.

Her faith in Jesus was paramount to her life. As a result, she devoted countless hours of prayer and volunteer time to Peace Lutheran church, and many other worthy organizations.

Shirley died on March 30, 2021 at Carris Care Center and Therapy Suites in Willmar at the age of 82.  She was a wonderful mother to Lynn (David) Bergren, Edina; Steven (Ann) Olson, Alexandria; John (Karen) Olson, Hutchinson; Jennifer (Wayne) Anttila, Lake Elmo; and Matthew Olson, Alexandria; Also surviving are 10 grandchildren: Jaime (Kylen) Bergren-Hanish, Adam (Suzanne) Bergren, and Ian Bergren; Stephanie Olson (Abdi Abas) and Joshua Olson; Karl Olson and Erik Olson; Lydia (Kyle) Bergen, Aaron (fiancé Tina) Martinenko, Alicia (Cody) Perzichilli and Leyna Huynh; and 10 great-grandchildren;  siblings, Gwen (Gary) Anfinson, Jean (Dick) Hewitt, Linda (Ronald) Everson and Ronald Manson (Teresa Chapa) and special foster children, Ernie Jacobson and Danny Tung Huynh(Dieu Nguyen). She will be sorely missed.

She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, Orlean in 2013 and sister and brother-in-law Irene and Willie Nelson.

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