Mundwiler and Larson Funeral Home of Browns Valley announces the death of Shirley Kamstra, 82, of Beardsley, Minn. Services will be held on Wednesday, August 7, 2013 at 10 a.m. at the United Methodist Church in Beardsley. Visitation will be held Tuesday evening, August 6, from 5 - 7 p.m. at the church and continue one hour prior to the service. Reverend Anna Williamson will officiate. Burial will be in the Fairview Cemetery in Raymond, Minn.
Shirley Marie Kamstra, daughter of William and Julia (Burns) Strootman, was born on September 26, 1930 on a farm southeast of Raymond, Minn. She was baptized and confirmed at the Raymond Methodist Church. Shirley attended Raymond Public School and graduated in 1949, the Valedictorian of her class. She earned a college scholarship to become a teacher but chose to marry her high school sweetheart, Alvin Kamstra, on September 24, 1949. They moved to Beardsley where she lived for 64 years. Three children were born to this marriage.
In 1945, Shirley's parents had purchased the Indian Beach Resort in Spicer, Minn., where she worked summers. In 1967 Shirley and Alvin bought the historic Old Mill Inn in Spicer. Shirley and the kids ran the resort in summers for several years. She also worked at the Beardsley Food Center and did childcare in her home for teachers. Shirley wrote the local news for area papers for 25 years and also had a radio program.
Shirley was a devoted Methodist from a very young age and always taught Sunday and Bible School. She was in the church choir for over 50 years and very involved with United Methodist Women.
Shirley loved nature and enjoyed 55 years at their cabin on Big Stone Lake. She and Alvin also went on many trips to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. Hobbies included reading, crossword puzzles, flowers, bird watching, pets, and especially her Minnesota Twins. Music was important to Shirley and she sang in Sweet Adeline's for 20 years as well as other choirs. Shirley had a wonderful personality and loved people. She was especially devoted to her faith family and friends.
At the age of 52, Shirley suffered a massive stroke, leaving her left side paralyzed. For 30 years she never complained of her handicaps, always having a positive attitude and sense of humor. After Alvin's death she enjoyed nearly two years living independently with the help of her dear friend, Nicole Hoffman, and her children.
Shirley died on July 31, 2013, at the Villa Maria Nursing Home in Fargo, N. D., having reached the age of 82.
Cherishing her memory are her children: Dennis (Joyce) Kamstra of Brainerd, Minn.; Judy Frisch of Moorhead, Minn.; and Brenda McNichols of Willmar, Minn.; eight grandchildren; ten great grandchildren; wonderful friend, Dennis Frisch; sisters and brothers-in-law: Joyce Strootman, Sylvia Hebrink, Vernon Fritz, and Wes and Bev Kamstra; and many nieces, nephew, and cousins.
Shirley was preceded in death by her husband, Alvin, on July 26, 2011; her parents, William and Julia Strootman; her brothers: Wilbur (Gert) Strootman and Robert Strootman; and her sister Dorothy (Clarence) Gunter.
Mundwiler and Larson Funeral Home of Browns Valley is in charge of arrangements for Shirley Kamstra. To leave condolences online, please visit www.mundwilerfuneralhome.net.