Ted Mayr Funeral Home and Crematory

3150 Loma Vista Road, Ventura, CA


Shirley Irene Kara

December 12, 1929May 10, 2020

Shirley Irene Kara died peacefully in Ventura, California with her family by her side on May 10, 2020, after a brief illness, at the age of 90.

She was born in Coalinga, California on December 12, 1929. Shirley came from a long line of native Californians. Her great-grandfather Augustus Bagley was a founding father of Grass Valley, CA. After graduating from Coalinga High School in 1948 she went on to graduate from St. Mary's College of Nursing in San Francisco in 1950, as a Registered Nurse. After working as a nurse in Hawaii she returned to Coalinga and married John Kara. They settled in Ojai, CA in 1956 after John was transferred to the Shell Oil Company Lease in Ventura, CA.

Shirley worked as a Registered Nurse for over 50 years. She was an active member of the St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, St. Joseph’s Women’s League and Family to Family, serving the homeless. Shirley was an avid reader - especially of mystery novels, and had a keen interest in Southwest Native American culture.

Shirley was preceded in death by her brother, Bill Spidell.

She is survived by John Sr., her loving husband of more than 63 years; Bill’s wife Alma Spidell of Modesto, CA; half-sister Gineva Steventon of Arlington, Virginia; daughter Jo Ann Kara of Camarillo, CA; son John Kara Jr. of Napa, CA, his wife Marianne, and their daughters Shawn and Haley; daughter Susan Davis, of Ventura, CA, her partner Ron Kozak, of Camarillo, and her children: daughter Genevieve Hauf and her husband Ryan of Ojai, CA and their son Liam, and Susan's son Cameron of Ventura, CA; and Shirley's youngest son, Stanley Kara, of Ojai, CA.

A celebration of her life will be announced at a later date. The family requests donations to the organization "Help of Ojai" in lieu of flowers.

Arrangements are under the direction of the Ted Mayr Funeral Home, 3150 Loma Vista Road, Ventura, CA 93003. Condolences may be sent to TedMayrFuneralHome.com.


No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.


Shirley Irene Kara

have a memory or condolence to add?

GM and Robert Steventon

May 30, 2020

Shirley Kara was the bravest woman I ever was privileged to have in my life. It is rather fitting that she died on Mother’s Day, because she exemplified everything having to do with love, kindness, and the care of her family; I know they will miss her sorely.
I was and will remain proud to be her sister.
GM Steventon
(And her brother-in-law Robert Steventon)
Alexandria, Virginia


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