Wed, Oct. 21

Obituary: Shirley Rae (Nelson) Walburn 1927-2016

Shirley Rae (Nelson) Walburn, 89 of Cottonwood, went to her eternal home with the Lord on October 15, 2016. She was born on June 10, 1927 in Salina, KS to Raymond Clarence Nelson and Edna Norine (Van Horne) Nelson.

Shirley attended school in Salina before moving to Denver, CO in the 5th grade. After she graduated high school, she moved with her family to Los Angeles where she attended photography school.

On June 23, 1946, she married the love of her life, Gerald Dean “Wally” Walburn. They were married for 63 years before his passing on July 23, 2009.

She always enjoyed life to the fullest, which included such hobbies as dancing, sewing, camping, water skiing and riding dirt bikes.

When she wasn’t busy taking care of her children, and then grandchildren, she was quietly serving others in the communities in which she lived.

Her heart always poured out so much love and compassion. Anyone who met Shirley, loved Shirley, and knew she loved them in return.

She inspired all of us to work hard at everything we do, to give without expectations, and to love unconditionally. She will always be remembered for her love for our Heavenly Father, her great cookies, homemade Christmas ornaments every year, and her love for anything chocolate! But most of all, we will remember her for the incredible wife, mother, mother-in-law, grandmother, great-grandmother, aunt and friend that she was.

Shirley was preceded in death by her father Raymond, mother Edna, brother Gary and husband Wally. She is survived by daughter Tani Stehle (Richard), son Rex Walburn (Judy), grandchildren Lisa Reiley, Kara Moloney (John), Jessey Walburn and Jeff Walburn, and great-grandchildren Tyler, Kyle, Cole, Nate, Caitlin, Colin, Cayden, Ryan and Harper.

There are no public services planned at this time.

An online guestbook is available to sign at

Information provided by survivors.

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