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Gary Frank Shirley

Gary Frank Shirley, 63, passed away suddenly on Wednesday, August 20 2014.

A Mass of Christian burial was celebrated at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, August 23, 2014, at St. Jerome Catholic Church, with Rev. Dan Scheel, Celebrant, and with concelebrant, Fr. Robert Kincl. Pallbearers at the Saturday mass were James and Matthew Shirley, Paul Simon, Jerry Bevel, George Watanabe, and Charles Towne. Gary was laid to rest on Monday, August 25 at the West Park Cemetery in Hereford, Texas. Fr. Anthony Aakula from St. Teresa Catholic Church in Friona, Texas conducted the services.

Gary, a resident of Houston, was the son of the late Ralph and Stella Shirley of Friona, Texas. Gary, an avid golfer, was born and raised in Friona, Texas and attended Texas Tech University where he received a degree in Architecture. Gary, a talented architect in Houston, was a member of the AIA, and served one term as president of the Construction Specifications Institute. He was an active member of St. Jerome where he belonged to the Knights of Columbus Fr. Diefenbach Council 4550 and proudly served as Grand Knight.

He was preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Jan Shirley.

He is survived by his wife of 17 years, Jalaine Touchet; his brother, Richard Shirley and wife Patricia; two nephews, James and Matthew Shirley; three step-children, Margery Davis, Jennifer Rollins, and Michael Lee; and six grandchildren, Garrett and Elizabeth Davis, Mallory and Samuel Rollins, and Maxton and Henry Lee.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project or to the charity of your choice.

Joy Waneen (Ragsdale) Van Keuren

Joy Waneen (Ragsdale) Van Keuren, 82, of Abilene, went to meet her maker after a long illness on Thursday, August 21, 2014. A Memorial Service will be held at a later date. Arrangements are by North’s Funeral Home, 242 Orange Street, Abilene, Texas.

Ms. Van Keuren was born January 25, 1932 in Muleshoe, Texas, to David E. and Zora (Shofner) Beller. She graduated from Muleshoe High School and was a member of the First United Methodist Church. She married Eddy Mack Ragsdale on June 26, 1949 in Muleshoe. After Mr. Ragsdale’s demise in 1985, she married Gene Van Keuren in Lake Tahoe, Nevada where they enjoyed ten years of marriage. She was blessed to have many extended cousins, aunts, uncles and other relatives in the Panhandle area. She loved her family dearly and was proud to say she was from Muleshoe, Texas.

Throughout her life, Joy never met a stranger. She was multi-talented and seemingly went about her days to make people smile. She led the MHS band as a drum major. She could sing, dance, play musical instruments and spread so much joy to those who met her…whether as a child or later in life. She worked as a newspaper journalist, seamstress, taught piano, interior decorator and an insurance and annuity agent. She brought love and kindness to everyone she knew. She enjoyed gardening, cooking, and attending Texas Tech Ladies Raider’s basketball team games.

She lived in the towns of Lazbuddie, Bovina, Hub, Friona, Hereford, Levelland and Lubbock, Texas as well as Reno, Nevada. In 2006, she moved to Bixby, Oklahoma, to be with her daughter, Rhonda. In 2010, she moved into the independent retirement community of Prairie Rose in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where she was also a member of the Boston Avenue Methodist Church. In February of 2014, she relocated to Abilene, Texas.

She was preceded in death by her parents, two husbands, and two granddaughters, Sabrina Turner Coffman and Jennifer Turner.

She is survived by her three daughters, Patti McCarty Stevenson and husband John (Skip) of Abilene, Texas, Rhonda Ragsdale Reed of Bixby, Oklahoma, and Alesia Ragsdale Turner and husband Larry of Abilene, Texas; one sister, Lavelle Gay and husband, Pat of Hearne, Texas; one cousin, Alva Lee Peeler of Hereford, Texas; two grandchildren, Megan Reed of Chesaning, Michigan, and Carlin Ragsdale and wife, Sherry; and three great-grandchildren, Davis James Hollenback of Michigan, Shalin and Katherine Ragsdale of Texas.

Her joyous smile and the mischievous twinkle in her eyes will never fade from her loved ones memories.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations are made to the Jennifer and Sabrina Turner Coffman Memorial Scholarship fund. Please make checks payable to Citibank, 1100 Andrews Hwy. Midland, Texas 79701.

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