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Shirley Ness

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Ness, Shirley Mae (nee Wells)

Shirley Mae Ness (nee Wells) passed away peacefully, October 24, 2012, with her family by her side. She was born on July 3, 1926. She grew up in Northeast Minneapolis, and lived there with her father, Alexander Hamilton Wells, mother, Katherine Wells, brothers, George Wells and William Wells, and sisters, Margie Wells and Ruth Wells.

Shirley attended and graduated from Edison High School, and immediately began working as a secretary and office worker. She loved roller skating, Frank Sinatra and going to the movies with friends.

She married Donal Lewis Ness in 1950, and they lived thereafter in Northeast Minneapolis at 606 36 and 1/2. In 1961, she became a stay at home mom, to Brons Wells Ness and in 1963, to Bart Alexander Ness. Donal worked numerous jobs, selling Lutheran Brotherhood insurance, managing a Bridgeman's Ice Cream franchise location, and the family moved to Port Edwards, Wisconsin, where Don was a production manager at a foundry. In 1978, the family moved to Neillsville, Wisconsin. In 1983, Don and Shirley moved to Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. Shirley was an office assistant for a trucking company, foundation assistant for Riverview Health Care. In 2002, she retired and was a volunteer for the family center, cancer center and the food pantry. They were both very active in their church being on the mission and building committees as well as volunteering on missons to the Hephzibah children's home in Macon, Georgia.

Shirley lived in Tomah, Wisconsin, from 2005 to present, with her oldest son, Brons, Diane and family.

She is survived by her children, Brons (Diane) Ness of Tomah, Wisconsin and Bart (Beth) Ness of Rockford, Minnesota; grandchildren, Johnathan, Eric, Drew, and Arisa; her sister, Margie (Rod) Jordon; and many nieces, nephews and friends.

A Celebration of Shirley's Life will be held Saturday, November 10, 2012, 1:30 p.m. at the Torkelson Funeral Home in Tomah. Pastor Jeff Ruetten will officiate. Family and friends are invited for visitation Saturday from 11:30 a.m. until the time of service at the funeral home. The Torkelson Funeral Home of Tomah is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences are available at

Published in Wisconsin Rapids Daily Tribune on Oct. 30, 2012
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