Shirley Nielsen, 1924-2017

Published 12:01 am Thursday, August 10, 2017

A memorial service for Shirley Mae Nielsen will be at 11 a.m. Monday at Trinity Lutheran Church in Albert Lea. The Rev. Eileen Woyen will officiate. Visitation will begin at 9 a.m. and go until the start of the service on Monday at the church. Interment will take place at Graceland Cemetery.

Shirley passed away on Thursday, July 27, 2017, at Oak Park Place in Albert Lea. She was 92.

Shirley Nielsen

Shirley Mae (Engle) Nielsen was born on Oct. 17, 1924, to William C. and Edith Mae (Jaden) Engle in Carrington, North Dakota. She grew up and went to school in North Dakota and moved to Albert Lea when she was a young woman. She would continue to be an Albert Lea resident the rest of her life.

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On Jan. 11, 1944, she was united in marriage to Stanley K. Nielsen in Albert Lea. To this union, six children were born. During World War II, Shirley worked at Wilson’s & Co., but soon after left her job to take care of her family and the home. She was a longtime member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Albert Lea, where she was active in the Trinity Women’s Deborah Circle. She was also a member of the Benevolent Patriotic Order of the DOES – Drove #70 in Albert Lea for a number of years. She and her husband enjoyed dancing at the Elk’s Lodge Chapter 813 and attended tire dealer association conventions together in different states of the United States, including Hawaii.

In her free time, she enjoyed bowling, golfing, reading, sewing, canning and, of course, shopping. She was known for her baking — pies, banana bread and caramel rolls being family favorites. Shirley was a spunky, fun loving person who always put other people ahead of herself. She devoted her life to caring for her family. She cherished family events and loved it when everyone would be together, so she always made those times special. She made friends easily and was always willing to lend a hand to someone in need.

She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Stanley, in 2002; and siblings Leone Ross, Gordon “Bud” Engle, William Engle Jr., Floyd Engle, Mabel Kyte, Gladys Rhoads, Madelyn Blackburn and Manley Engle.

Those left to carry on her legacy include her children Sandra (James) Nelson of Buffalo Grove, Illinois, Kathy (Albert) Viehman of Loveland, Colorado, Timothy (Phyllis) Nielsen of Cottage Grove, Teresa (Paul) Kvitek of Eagle Lake, Rodney (Cheryl) Nielsen of Albert Lea and Jeffrey (Jodi) Nielsen of Albert Lea; grandchildren Kristen (Dan) Shafron, Gabriel Nielsen, Ellen (Nathan) Saj, Shaina (Chad) Rutherford, Laura (Nick) Falenczykowski, Cody (Crystal Farris) Nielsen, Samantha Nielsen and Brody Nielsen; great-grandchildren, Emily Mae Shafron, Gavin Rutherford, Benjamin Saj, Ayson Rutherford, Hazel Saj, Bryar Nielsen, Sawyer Falenczykowski and very soon-to-be baby Saj; sister, Betty White of Mandan, North Dakota; brother in-law, Earl Nielsen of Oakland; as well as many nieces, nephews and friends.

Shirley’s family wishes to express their thanks and gratitude to the caregivers of Oak Park Place, Visiting Angels and to other caring friends for the love, care, humor and continued kindness they provided to Shirley over the last six years.

Memorials are preferred to the Alzheimer’s Association, Trinity Lutheran Church or the donor’s choice.