Shirley Jean Carlson Dunbar 92, passed away at the Hi-Line Retirement Center on December 7, 2019 with her family by her side. The Funeral Service for Shirley will be held on December 14, 2019 at 11:00 am at Kirkwood Funeral Home.
Shirley was born to Carl David Carlson and Anna Jensine Larson Carlson on August 3, 1927 in Whitewater MT. at age 18, married Archie Blue Dunbar on December 22, 1945. Together they had 3 sons and 1 daughter and raised their family on the Dunbar Ranch North of Whitewater. Shirley was a sister, aunt, wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, good neighbor and well respected lady to all who knew her. She had a way about her that would make you feel special. Shirley always felt blessed because she had a good relationship with all her family, friends and neighbors. In her younger years she worked at the Brandt General Store, Shirley loved to dance, was active in the Whitewater Women’s Club, and was very involved with her kids in 4-H and sports. Her grandchildren knew her as Farm Grandma or Grandma Great and had a love and respect for all animals, cats, and dogs. Shirley’s pastime was reading, writing letters, playing bridge, along with all types of card games. She taught all her grandkids how to play cards. She will be greatly missed but lives on in each of us. Shirley was the clerk at the Whitewater School, and also carried U.S. Mail in the Whitewater community for 43 years.
Archie passed away in 1977, she continued to live on the ranch and be very independent. As a homemaker she enjoyed her vegetable garden, flowers, canning, cooking, baking, and sewing, she made quilts for many family members along with taking part in her grandkids activities. Shirley always had the coffee pot on, and cookies or a meal ready for any drop-ins. Many of her cookies and candies found their way into mail boxes for friends and neighbors. Over the years there where several ranch hands and family members she cooked meals for, and soon she learned what there likes and dislikes were and cooked and baked accordingly to meet there needs. She had a way of spoiling us all. Her flowers and gardening seemed to be a time of relaxation for her. Mom every year loved to see the back garden blooming with Gary’s Yellow California Poppies. He also gave her a cactus plant which she threatened to throw out many times, nevertheless, still faithfully put it out in the summer and back in the house for the winter.
Shirley is survived by her children David (Janet), Archie Patrick (Barb), Richard, Dixie, and Dale (Susy) Carlson, her grandchildren, Sherrill “Missy” Dunbar, Tyanna, Kevin Brock; David Grant (Melissa) Isla, Ainsley, and Merrin; Sarah (Paul) Skubina, Korbyn, Emmett; Julie Moore, Nolan; Mary (Ray) Smail, MaRae; Chelsea Sunford, along with several nieces and nephews.
She is preceded in death by her parents, husband Archie, siblings Helen Mavencamp, Charlie Carlson, Clyde Carlson, and Stella Hellie; Grandson Scott Moore; and Son-in-law John W. Moore.