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Shirely Hildebrand

Shirley Helen Hildebrand

November 3rd, 1934 - August 18th, 2023

Shirley's Obituary

Shirley Helen Hildebrand, 88, of Berrien Springs, MI, passed away peacefully in her daughter's home in Wolverine, MI on August 18, 2023.

Shirley was born on November 3, 1934, to Arthur and Helen (Puffpaff) Leise in East Detroit, MI. After graduating from high school in 1952, she went on to study journalism at Michigan State University. Shirley met Walter Hildebrand at a Walther League Gathering in 1955, and they wed on November 23, 1957. After they wed, Shirley and Walt moved to their farm in Berrien Springs, MI, where they built a house together and farmed until Walt’s death on July 11, 1988.

Shirley raised five children, and her faith and family were a very important to her. She was an active member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Berrien Springs where, among numerous other activities, she was a dedicated member of the Ladies Aid and the Lutheran Women’s Missionary League (LWML). Shirley also enjoyed judging canning and cake decorating at the Berrien County Youth Fair for many years. She was passionate about the expansion of the Berrien County Public Library, serving on the board for several years as treasurer. Shirley could often be found ushering for concerts and shows at the Mendel Center or working in her beautiful yard.

Throughout her life she possessed a love for travel often taking trips with family and close friends. Many of her trips were with her sister, Marion. The family has fond memories of stories from those adventures lovingly referring to the two of them as “Lucy and Ethel.”

Shirley was preceded in death by her parents, husband, her son, Mark, and her sister Marion (Arthur) Rockensuess. She is survived by four children, Glen of Kalamazoo, Sheryl (David) Marsh of Wolverine, Duane (Keith) of Winter Garden, FL, and Greg (Laura) of Berrien Springs; daughter-in-law, Megan Yeager; six grandchildren, Samantha (Everett) Case, Julia, Sydney, Seth, Luke, and Paige.

Visitation will be held at Starks & Menchinger Chapel in St. Joseph, MI on Monday, August 21, 2023 from 4-7pm. A celebration of life service will be held at Trinity Lutheran Church in Berrien Springs on Tuesday, August 22, 2023 at 10:30am. Burial will follow the service at Riverview Cemetery.

The family requests that all flowers and notes are sent to Starks & Menchinger Chapel, 2650 Niles Road, St. Joseph, MI 49085. Memorial contributions may be made to the Berrien Springs Public Library, 215 W Union St. Berrien Springs, MI 49103, and the Lutheran Women's Missionary League, https://www.lwml.org/home. Those wishing to leave an online condolence may do so at www.starksfamilyfh.com.

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