Shirley Ann Whitten

Shirley Ann Whitten

Shirley Ann Whitten
January 5, 1935 – January 21, 2021
Oskaloosa, Iowa | Age 86

Shirley Whitten, 86, of Oskaloosa died Thursday, January 21, 2021, at the MHP Hospice Serenity House in Oskaloosa. She was born January 5, 1935, in Pershing, Iowa, the daughter of Herschel and Clara (Smith) Miller.

Shirley graduated from Attica High School with the class of 1953.

On November 22, 1953, she was united in marriage to William “Bill” Whitten. To this union three children were born, William, Kenneth, and Kelsie.

Bill’s career as a pilot in the military took the family all over the world. In addition to caring for her family and tending to their home, Shirley gave selflessly to her church and other civic organizations. Though they moved often, she was always willing to find her spot in their new duty station.

Upon Bill’s retirement from the military, the family moved back to Iowa and settled in Marion County. Shirley and Bill later divorced after many years of marriage.

Once settled in Iowa, Shirley went to work at the D.O.T. office at Southridge Mall in Des Moines, then transferred to the D.O.T. Oskaloosa office. A year later, she took a job as secretary at the D.H.S. office in Oskaloosa. She always wanted to be a secretary and she enjoyed her work in that office and felt like she was really helping people. She retired from D.H.S. in 2001.

Shirley lived a full life, in her words she was a small-town girl born in Pershing, Iowa that saw the world. She had an adventurous and outgoing personality. She enjoyed traveling all over the world and made it a point to visit all 50 states. She not only enjoyed the sightseeing part of traveling but she enjoyed the people she met along the way. Shirley was passionate about the D.A.R., she was a longtime member and held several offices over the years. She enjoyed traveling with the D.A.R. all over the eastern United States.

Shirley enjoyed sewing, quilting, knitting, and solving number puzzles. She also loved animals, especially poodles. She had a lifelong love for Elvis Presley and his music. She delighted in spending time with her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren.

Her family includes her three children: William “Bill” (& Janice Jordan) Whitten of Oskaloosa, Kenneth Whitten of Oskaloosa, and Kelsie (& Randy) Whitten-Smith of West Liberty; five grandchildren: Wil (& Karen) Whitten, Krystal (& Josh) Valster, Kenneth Whitten, Paul Whitten, and Lynsee Smith; five great grandchildren; a great great granddaughter; and a sister-in-law, Roena Miller.

She was preceded in death by her parents; a sister, Lillian (& Donald) Lookabaugh; and a brother, Herschel Miller.

A celebration of life ceremony will be held Saturday, January 30, 2021, at 10:30 a.m. in the Bates Funeral Chapel with Reverend Chad Lierman officiating.
As was her wish her body has been cremated. The Bates Funeral Chapel is in charge of the arrangements.
According to the rules put in place by the Iowa Department of Public Health, proper social distancing and reasonable personal protective equipment is advised for attending a religious public event.
Open visitation will begin Friday after 12 noon in the Bates Funeral Chapel and the family will be at the funeral chapel from 5-7 Friday evening to greet friends and relatives.

To send flowers or a memorial gift to the family of Shirley Ann Whitten please visit the Bates Funeral Chapel Sympathy Store.

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