Cover photo for Shirley Jean Stelter's Obituary
Shirley Jean Stelter Profile Photo
1934 Shirley 2023

Shirley Jean Stelter

August 3, 1934 — May 8, 2023

Moorhead, MN

Shirley Jean (Hanson) Stelter, 88, of Moorhead, MN, passed away on Monday, May 8, 2023, at Eventide Nursing Home, Fargo, ND.

Shirley was born on August 3, 1934, in Fergus Falls, MN, to Walter and Sylvia (Zimmerman) Hanson. She grew up in Fergus Falls where she graduated from Fergus Falls High School. She was also a 1955 graduate of Abbott Hospital School of Nursing, in Minneapolis, MN, and graduated in 1970 from Jamestown College in Jamestown, ND.

Shirley married Willis L. Stelter on August 3, 1955, in Fergus Falls, MN. Since that time, they have made their home in Moorhead, MN.

Shirley worked as a clinical instructor at St. John’s and St. Ansgar Hospital’s School of Nursing. Clay County Public Health was her work area for 13 years as a staff nurse, home health aide director, and director of nurses. She was also a nursing consultant for the Minnesota Department of Human Services. Her last years in nursing were at MeritCare Diabetes Center as a certified diabetes educator.

She was an active member of Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, especially enjoying the Life Light Bible series, along with being involved in the LWML, church circle group, and prayer shawl ministry. Shirley participated in the community in many ways, Mrs. Jaycees, various Republican organizations, Camp Fire Girls, Clay County Child Protection Team, Diabetes Association, National League of Nursing, and the Red River Danes. In retirement, she did volunteer work, serving on the Clay County health Advisory Committee and Churches United for the homeless community. She also spent several summers in China teaching English as a second language to Chinese English teachers and medical personnel.

Shirley treasured family gatherings, traveling, reading, knitting, learning new things, and communicating with her family in Denmark.

Shirley is survived by her husband, Willis; two sons, Jon (Anne) Stelter, Chaska, MN, and Scot (Vicki) Stelter, Detroit Lakes, MN; two daughters, Sherry (Doug) Thorson, Fergus Falls, MN, and Lori Stelter, Blaine, WA; grandchildren, Serena Burkdoll, Fergus Falls, MN, Elissa (Tino) Harris, Morris, MN, Jessica (Colin) Metry, Detroit Lakes, MN, Jarrett Stelter, Detroit Lakes, MN, Dylan Thorson, Fergus Falls, MN, Jordan (Sasha) Thorson, Fargo, ND, Jen (Scott) Tonneson, St. Paul, MN, Anna (Brian) Mayer, Glendale, WI, Mike (Beth) Thorson, Fergus Falls, MN, Brent (Kelly) Jones, Pine City, MN, and Greg (Michelle) Jones, New Market, MN; great-grandchildren, Mackenzie, Zander, Zoey, Zalia, and Feyre Burkdoll, Owen and Noah Tonneson, Tyler (Sydney), Isaiah, Alayna, and Lydia Mayer, Oliver, Natalie, Jenna, and Lauren Thorson, Elijah and Caleb Jones, Carly (Jeff) Helander, Sylas, Brooklyn, Nevaeh, and Faith Thorson, Sonja and Theo Harris, and Lincoln Metry; and many other loving relatives and friends.

Shirley is preceded in death by her parents, Walter and Sylvia; and half-brothers, Wallace Hanson, and Roger Ellingson.

Memorials may be designated to Lutheran Church Missouri Synod Missions Central.

Visitation will be from 3:00 P.M. to 5:00 P.M., with the prayer service beginning at 4:30 P.M., Sunday, May 14, 2023, at Wright Funeral Home, Moorhead, MN. Visitation will continue from 10:00 A.M. to 11:00 A.M., followed by the memorial service at 11:00 A.M., Monday, May 15, 2023, at Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, Moorhead, MN. A livestream of the prayer service on Sunday, and the memorial service on Monday will be available here on Shirley's webpage. Burial will be at Oak Grove Cemetery, Fergus Falls, MN, at a later date.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Shirley Jean Stelter, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Sunday, May 14, 2023

3:00 - 5:00 pm (Central time)

Wright Funeral Home and Cremation Service-Moorhead

605 2nd Ave S, Moorhead, MN 56560

Prayer service beginning at 4:30 P.M.

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Memorial Service

Monday, May 15, 2023

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Central time)

Our Redeemer Lutheran Church - Moorhead

1000 14th St S, Moorhead, MN 56560

Visitation one hour prior

A livestream of the service will be available here on Shirley's webpage.

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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