OBITUARY

Shirley Elaine Stanelle

February 8, 1928March 25, 2021
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Shirley Elaine Stanelle, 93, passed away March 25, 2021 in Pueblo West, Colorado. She was born in Green Bay, Wis. to parents William and Lena Rupp. She was the widow of Kenneth G. Stanelle after sharing 46 years of marriage. They had a deep and abiding love and she missed him every day since he left this earth in 1994.

Shirley was a prolific, award-winning artist and exceptional businesswoman. Although she and Ken always worked together, she was a woman ahead of her time. She was President of S-K Potteries & Mold Co., Inc through the 60’s in Wisconsin, and then in Pueblo West from ‘73-82. In 1976, she won the Colorado Small Business Person of the Year.

After the mold business, Shirley ran Earth ‘n Art Gift Shop for 13 years on B St. in the historic district of Pueblo. Her life was filled with art, travel, friends, her church and most importantly, her family. She wrote her first book at 89 years old and after surviving a terrible car crash into a mountain ravine, she told the er nurses, “You must always live life to the fullest! I was on an adventure!” Shirley was a shining light for so many, her smile lit up the room and her indomitable spirit touched many lives.

She was a founding member of the Ecumenical Church of Pueblo West and she and her husband hosted the congregation in the lunchroom of the pottery plant for years before helping the church find a permanent home. Shirley loved God and served her community in many ways. She heard a voice tell her to ‘build a garden’ and with the help of The Gardenin’ Angels, the Paradise Memorial Garden at the church in PW was born. The almost 2 acre garden is open to visitors and memorials for all members of the community. It is the gift she leaves behind and is her best legacy.

Shirley and Ken enjoyed being a host family for international college students. They loved learning about other cultures and always made guests feel welcome. They named their expansive house in Pueblo West ‘La Casa de Sueños’, The House of Dreams. They both dreamed big and accomplished so many of their goals.

Before and after her husband’s death, Shirley would throw wonderful parties, fundraisers, open houses and events. For their 40th wedding anniversary, they planned a 7-day event-filled party and sent out invitations 3 years in advance. The Annual “High Tea” Fundraiser held at the church was her favorite event each year to help fund the Paradise Memorial Garden.

Shirley loved ‘taking the waters’ at Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs and would go there as often as she could. She was always up for any adventure and was a world traveler.

Shirley was a wonderful watercolorist, slab clay artist, free-hand glaze artist and she created many beautiful designs on her husband Ken’s pottery. She took a watercolor course in Mexico and dived into painting even deeper. Later in life she learned to throw on the potters wheel and how to fire Raku pottery. She was always learning and trying new things. She wrote the book Pick Up The Clay, the story of her husband’s experience as a police officer and his recovery after being involved in a deadly knife and gun fight while on duty. Surviving this experience prompted him to become an inspirational speaker with the goal of lifting others up and helping them get on with their lives after tragedy. They were an awesome team.

Shirley said she would like to be remembered for her smile and that she always listened. She has been described by her loved ones as loving, fun, spunky, warm, lively, organized, hilarious, smart, kind, forgiving, accommodating, driven, spontaneous, caring, friendly, happy, smiling, positive, helpful, consistent, innovative, adventurous, accomplished, talented and vibrant.

She often spoke of how lucky she felt that she had family that loved and cared for her so well. She rarely complained, had an incredible work ethic and was a joyful, happy person.

She is survived by four children; Michael Stanelle, Peggy Kramer, (spouse Larry Kramer), David Stanelle (spouse Camille M. Lopez) and Penn Parmenter, (spouse Cord Parmenter), 6 grandchildren, Kenny Kramer, Cydney Kramer, (spouse Kevin J. Borgstedt), Julian Stanelle, Maximilian Parmenter, (partner Jeremy Rapp), Beauregard Parmenter, (partner Kristine Henrich), and Wulfgar Parmenter, and 3 Great-Grandchildren; Sofia, Kevin Jr., and Gemma.

Shirley is also survived by 2 nieces and 2 nephews, Sherry Stanelle, Janice Norelius, Randy Meilke and Gary Rosner, along with numerous grand nieces and nephews.

Shirley will be laid to rest at Imperial Cemetery at 11am, Sat., April 3rd, 2021. The Memorial Service will begin at 1pm in the Paradise Memorial Garden at the Ecumenical Church of Pueblo West.

In lieu of flowers or gifts, please make a donation to the Ecumenical Church of Pueblo West to maintain the Paradise Memorial Garden.

  • DONATIONS

  • Ecumenical Church of Pueblo West, the Paradise Memorial Garden

Services

  • Graveside Service

    Saturday, April 3, 2021

  • Memorial Service

    Saturday, April 3, 2021

Memories

Shirley Elaine Stanelle

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Tammy Maté-Peterson

March 27, 2021

Working on Shirley's book of Ken and the Stanelle Family's life (Pick Up The Clay: A Policeman's Life Journey) is a treasured memory I truly will never forget. It was one of my life's great blessings. Shirley and Ken were undeniably SHINING STARS, as Peggy so aptly wrote on Facebook; and my parents and grandparents (lifelong friends of the Stanelles) informed me over and over again as I grew up.

Sending LOVE & HUGS to All of Shirley's Loved Ones & Friends
❤❤❤❤❤❤

Tammy Maté-Peterson

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY

Shirley walking the shores of Lake Superior

FROM THE FAMILY

Shirley with sister Margie

FROM THE FAMILY

Shirley in her Paradise Memorial Garden

FROM THE FAMILY

Shirley with daughter Peggy and granddaughter Cydney

FROM THE FAMILY

Shirley in her Paradise Memorial Garden

FROM THE FAMILY

Gigi with great-granddaughter Sofia

FROM THE FAMILY

Gigi with great-grandchildren Junior and Sofia

FROM THE FAMILY

Shirley and her Gardenin' Angels

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY

Shirley walking the shores of Lake Superior

FROM THE FAMILY

Shirley with sister Margie

FROM THE FAMILY

Shirley in her Paradise Memorial Garden

FROM THE FAMILY

Shirley with daughter Peggy and granddaughter Cydney

FROM THE FAMILY

Shirley in her Paradise Memorial Garden

FROM THE FAMILY

Gigi with great-granddaughter Sofia

FROM THE FAMILY

Gigi with great-grandchildren Junior and Sofia

FROM THE FAMILY

Shirley and her Gardenin' Angels

FROM THE FAMILY

Gigi with great-granddaughter Sofia