Shirley R. Johnson, age 91, of Ivanhoe, MN passed away Thursday, July 8, 2021, at the Sunrise Manor Nursing Home in Tyler, MN. Mass of Christian Burial will be 11:00 a.m. Tuesday, July 13, 2021, at Ss. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Ivanhoe, MN. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service at the church. Burial will be in the Ss. Peter and Paul Catholic Cemetery, Ivanhoe. Houseman Funeral Home, Birk Chapel in Canby, MN is entrusted with the arrangements.
Shirley Rose (Froegel) Johnson was born on September 5, 1929, at the Tyler hospital. She was raised in Ivanhoe by her parents, John and Rose (Stahowiak) Froegel. Shirley was Baptized, received Holy Communion, and the Holy Sacrament of Confirmation at the Ss. Peter & Paul Catholic Church in Ivanhoe. She graduated in 1947 from Ivanhoe High School, then a week later went to St. Paul for a job at the Fort Snelling Canteen. After a few years, she moved to Minneapolis, learning how to operate different office machines in a variety of jobs. Shirley moved back to Ivanhoe to help her parents in the Liquor Store and at Jack’s Taylor Shop. During that time, she met Norman after he had just come back from serving in the military during the war. On February 16, 1955, she married Norman John Johnson at Ss. Peter & Paul Catholic Church. After a one-month honeymoon, the couple settled in Ivanhoe for four years, while Norman worked on the County Highway Department and Shirley continued to work in the County Soil and Conservation Surveyor’s Office. They moved to Marshall when Norman took a position with the State Highway Department. They had two daughters, Ann Marie and Mary Beth. Shirley and Norman spent every summer at Lake Shaokatan helping Shirley’s parents at their Lake cabin. A few years later, they purchased the land next to the Froegel property. They bought a house from the area where the Marshall Airport was being built, and moved it from Marshall to Lake Shaokatan, so they could enjoy having their own place at the lake. Every summer the family spent their weekend time gardening, fishing and being with other family members. In 1990, while visiting Ann Marie in North Carolina, Norman passed away suddenly. Shirley continued to visit her daughter in the winters that followed while spending her summers at the lake. She liked going to the Brookings Folk Art Festival to buy pottery, and to Polska Kielbasa Days for homemade Polish foods. She was a terrific maker of specialty rhubarb jams from her garden in town (everyone liked getting a jar of cherry rhubarb!).
She leaves behind two daughters: Ann Marie (William) Crosmun, and Mary Beth (Jim) Buhr, three grandchildren: Megan, Colt (Tasha), and Katie; four great-grandchildren: Mason, Bentley, Brielle, and Reggins; sister-in-law, Joyce Froegel, and several nieces and nephews. Shirley was preceded in death by her parents, John and Rose Froegel, her husband, Norman, her brothers, David and Gerald ‘Jerry’ Froegel, her sister, Sharon and husband, Merle Wilson.