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Obituary: Shirley E. Thompson

Shirley E. Thompson, age 69, of Esko, passed away Monday, December 18, 2023, at Inter-Faith Care Center in Carlton.

She was born September 1, 1954, in Duluth, the daughter of Charles and Delores (Sondeland) Towner. Shirley graduated from Proctor High School in 1972. She spent many years devoting her full attention to raising her family, and later held a 33-year career at the Members Co-op Credit Union. Shirley loved traveling to St. Cloud, South Dakota, Galveston, Texas, Orlando, Florida and anywhere her grandchildren were.

She attended numerous music competitions, musicals, sporting events, dance competitions and recitals over the years. She loved to cook up a storm. Some of her specialties were apple pie, chow mein, lemon bars, potato salad, Christmas cookies, caramels, caramel corn, Jello salads, pistachio salad, taco dip, and so much more. She loved going to craft shows and creating things herself or with the help of Dean. Tie blankets, cross stitch towels and pillows were her favorite things to make for gifts. They made things together like bean bag games and outdoor lighting. She enjoyed going to demo derby with Dean and cheering on the Thompson cars. Going to the State Fair was an annual tradition to celebrate their anniversary and her birthday. Shirley was a coupon queen and enjoyed shopping and getting the best deals. She loved her family and would spoil them with the best gifts and the best price. She would often brag about what a deal she got on everything. Of all the things Shirley did in her 69 years, being a mom was her proudest achievement. She was fierce, feisty, and full of opinions. She was smart, strong, and loving too. She fought hard this whole last year, and she cherished every last day.

Shirley was preceded in death by her parents; and two brothers, William Towner, and Thomas Towner. She is survived by her husband, Dean Thompson; sons, Craig (Donielle) Bennett, Derek (Hollie) Bennett, Tad (Rachelle) Bennett, Erik Thompson, and Michael Thompson; one sister, Debbie (Dan) Hill; 16 grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.

The family wishes to thank the entire team at Inter-Faith Care Center, specifically Deacon John and Shirley’s favorite nurses, Amy, Kyle, and John. They also deeply appreciate the St. Croix Hospice team, especially Chaplain Todd Carlson.

A visitation will be held Friday, December 29, 2023, from 1 p.m. until the 2 p.m. memorial service at Nelson Funeral Care in Cloquet, followed with refreshments in the fellowship room. Spring inurnment will be at Maple Grove Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred. To sign an online registry, please visit http://www.nelsonfuneralcare.net.

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