KINGSFORD - Shirley M. "Shirl" Rice, 79, of 1012 Emmet Ave., Kingsford, went to be with her Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ on Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2009, after a courageous battle with mesothelioma, lung cancer. She was surrounded by her loving family.
Shirley was born Dec. 11, 1929, in Iron Mountain, daughter of the late William and Agnes (Lundquist) Staple. She was a lifelong resident of Kingsford, and graduated in 1948 from Kingsford High School with her beloved husband of 50 years, Bernard D. "Bunny" Rice who preceded her in death in 2002.
She was a lifelong member of First Lutheran Church and was a member of the Lydia Circle. She enjoyed listening to music and was an avid bowler, playing in the couples league and on several teams. Shirley loved to spend time with her family and especially enjoyed attending her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren's sporting events and musical concerts.
Shirley and Bunny owned and operated Rice's Fried Cakes. She was a secretary for Fox Forest Products, a medical transcriptionist for Dr. William Hinz and retired from Customer Metal Fabrication in 1998. .
She is survived by a son, William (Sheree) Rice; seven daughters, Patti (Ron) Schneider, Vicki (Ford) Waterman, Debbie (Bill) Johnson, Lori (Jim) Machus, Jodi LaVarnway, Tami (Jon) Olson, Jackie (Steve) Schaut; 17 grandchildren, Tanya (Dennis) DalSanto, Tara (Scott) Person, Aaron Schneider, Benjamin (Desiree) Schneider, William (Vivien) Johnson, Bjorn (Amber) Johnson, Brent Johnson (Jill Anderson), Bradley Machus, Kimberly (Matt) Newbold, Jamie LaVarnway, Matthew Rice, Michael, Kaylin and Daniel Olson, and Mike, Tyler and Trever Schaut; 13 great-grandchildren, Dylan, Victoria and Alexis DalSanto, Austin and Abigail Person, Carly and Colin Schneider, Luke Machus, Ashley and Rocke Johnson, and Madisyn, Hayden and Sydney Johnson; an aunt, Lillian Bouffiou; brother-in-law, William (Delores) Rice; sisters-in-law, Lois Rice and Noreen Rice; and many nieces and nephews.
Shirley was also preceded in death by her son-in-law, David LaVarnway, her mother-in-law and father-in-law, Leo and Hazel Rice, and brothers-in-law, Jackie, Melvin, James, Robert and Leo Rice, and grandson, Paul Waterman.
Visitation will be held on Thursday from 3 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Erickson-Rochon and Nash Funeral Home in Iron Mountain.
The funeral service will follow at 7 p.m. on Thursday at the First Lutheran Church. Rev. James Chinery will officiate.
Burial will be in Cemetery Park in Iron Mountain.
Shirley's grandsons will serve as pallbearers.
In lieu of flowers, a memorial will be established in her memory.
Shirley was the most wonderful mother the Lord could have blessed us with. Our lives will never be the same until we are reunited in Heaven. Words can not express how much we will miss her.
Condolences may be expressed to the family of Shirley M. Rice online at www.ernashfuneralhomes.com
The family has entrusted the Erickson-Rochon and Nash Funeral Home of Iron Mountain with the funeral arrangements.