Obituary: Shirley Ann Warden
March 31, 2009
Shirley Ann Warden, a longtime Granby resident, died at her home in Denver on March 20, 2009. She was 84. She was born Shirley Wetzel on Aug. 14, 1924 to Jennie and Elmer Wetzel in Manila, Iowa.
At a young age, she moved with her parents to Greeley County in western Kansas to live in the country and farm what was then unbroken grassland. Life was not easy. First the Great Depression and dust bowl came along, and then in 1937 her father died at the age of 42 after a long illness, leaving eight children and her mother to fend for themselves. The farm was lost to foreclosure, and her oldest brother became the first local boy to be killed in World War II.
She graduated from high school in Tribune, Kansas and went on to earn her Associate in Arts degree at the Dodge City Junior College in Dodge City, Kan. She taught school for two years and then moved to Denver where she joined a young adults group at Calvary Baptist Church. Her future in-laws, the chaperones of the young adults group, introduced her to their son, Robert “Bob” Rusk Warden. She married Bob on May 25, 1948 in Denver and they moved to Boulder so he could attend pharmacy school at the University of Colorado.
In 1952, after living briefly in La Junta and Ft. Collins, they moved to Granby where they lived until 2004 when they moved to Denver. In those 50 some years, she had a loving and happy marriage, raised a son and daughter, was a member of the Church of the Eternal Hills, made many dear and lifelong friends, and was active in a host of community organizations and causes.
Bob, her children and church were very important to her. She loved to garden and was an avid bridge player and reader. The proximity of mountain activities allowed her to learn to ski and play golf. After she became an empty nester she worked for the Grand County Combined Courts and later worked with Bob at the Granby Drug Store. In later years, she and Bob traveled and spent happy times with family and friends. In the last year she saw her grandson, Jeddiah Andrews, graduate from the University of Colorado, and was there for the birth of her great-grandson, Zaeden Leif Hughes, to her granddaughter Arielle Andrews.
She is survived by her son Steven Robert Warden and her daughter Dana Diane Andrews, both of Denver, as well as her grandchildren and great-grandson, a sister and brother, and numerous nieces and nephews. Bob preceded her in death on May 21, 2005.
A memorial service will be held Saturday, April 4, at 1:30 p.m. at the Church of the Eternal Hills in Tabernash with a reception to follow in the Fellowship Hall at the church. Memorial contributions in Shirley Warden’s name may be made to the Granby Library, PO Box 1049, Granby CO 80446-1049 or to a charity of your choice.