Washington Evening Journal
111 North Marion Avenue
Washington, IA 52353
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Shirley Lee Dennison
Shirley Lee Dennison, 89, of Ottumwa, died September 16, 2022, at Addington Place in Ottumwa.
Shirley Lee Dennison was born in Brashear Mo. on July 10, 1933, to David and Helen Lucille Pierce. She moved to Eddyville, IA, in 1938. They then moved to Lockman where she attended school through the 8th grade. Shirley moved in with her grandmother, Bertha Garret in Kirksville, Mo. for her first year of high school. She then moved with her parents to Keokuk, IA, where she graduated high school in 1951. She married James W. Dennison on December 24, 1951. They moved to England for 2 years while James was in the Army. Shirley was proud to tell you she was there the year the Queen Elizabeth was coronated more than 70 years ago!
They had 3 children, Vicki (Mark) Johnston of Mt. Pleasant, Jody (Terry) Rupe of Ottumwa and Robert (Susan Parker) Dennison of Scottsdale, AZ; 5 grandchildren, Emily Rupe (Caleb Burton) of Ottumwa, Jason (Wendy) Johnston of Waterloo, Misti (Scott) Schumaker of Winfield, IA, Adam (April) Johnston and Kayla Johnston of Mt. Pleasant, IA; 9 great-grandchildren, Paxton and Drake Gould of Ottumwa, Brynjar Johnston of Johnston, IA, Shyanne Johnston of Cedar Rapids, IA, Baylee (Tristan) Hart of Stockport, IA, Callee (Kyle) Hill, Luke Pfiefer and Christina and Aleah Johnston of Mt. Pleasant; 4 great-great-grandchildren, Blayne and Croix Hill of Mt Pleasant, IA, and Colsen and Memphis Hart of Stockport, IA. Shirley is also survived by a sister, Jane (Mike) Dunning of Columbia, MO; sister-in-laws, Rose Ann LeMaster and Pat Elder of St. Francisville, MO; and several nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her husband; parents; brother, JD Pierce; sister, Ruth Denham; and grandson, Bryan Rupe.
Shirley went to LPN nursing school in Ottumwa in 1961, She then worked 10 years in the Emergency Room at Ottumwa Hospital. The last 2 years she also worked on her days off as an EMT-A located at St. Joe Hospital. In 1976 Shirley went to work for Dr. Robert Blommer where she stayed until she retired in 2000. Dr. Blommer and Judy remained very good friends throughout her life. Shirley also ran a garage sale every weekend on Finley St. for over 40 years helping many families clothe their children! She also worked part time at her daughter’s gift store, Bargains and Deals, for many years after her retirement. In December of 2016 Shirley moved to The Lodge Independent Living at Good Sam. Here she met many special friends. She loved “the gang’s” nightly talks. Her final years were spent at Addington Place in Ottumwa where once again she made great friendships and cherished the staff there who were always so loving in their care. Shirley loved to cook for her family and friends and could always put together huge meals, seemingly in a snap. Shirley never stopped being a nurse. She was always nursing people wherever she lived and it was truly her life’s calling. She loved her family above all else and will be missed beyond words.
Her body has been cremated. Graveside services and inurnment will be 11 a.m. Tuesday, September 20th at Shaul Cemetery with her niece, Kendra York officiating.
In lieu of flowers, we ask you to visit someone in a care facility, bake for someone you care about, mail a card to someone dear to you, or donate to a charity meaningful to you. Mom always loved her dogs and alternatively, donations to Heartland Humane Society, P.O. Box 1150, Ottumwa, IA 52501 would be welcome.
Reece Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.