Shirley Topka, 82, of Alvarado, MN, passed away on Thursday, June 21, 2018, in Altru Hosoital, Grand Forks, ND.
Shirley Ann was born on March 8, 1936, to Ingvald and Edith (Larson) Efterfield, in Warroad, MN. When she was a girl, her family moved to her father's family farm in Bigwoods Township, near Argyle, and Shirley graduated from Argyle High School in 1955. Shortly after, Shirley moved to Milwaukee, where she worked for American Motors as a seamstress for nearly a decade. She returned home to Argyle and was blessed to meet George Topka. Her “Good Life” began on June 10, 1967, when the two were married in Bigwoods Lutheran Church.
They made their home in Alvarado, and Shirley, in addition to raising her growing family, worked a side job as a seamstress (though it was nearly enough for full time work). She never turned down a job and loved completing the challenging ones other seamstresses had declined. In addition to hundreds of crafts, floral designing and other projects; Shirley made prom dresses, wedding dresses, and all of her children's bridesmaids dresses (not to mention one stellar pair of bell bottom pants for her oldest son).
Shirley loved to socialize and was very active in New Hope Lutheran Church and the American Legion Auxiliary. She cherished her Coffee Parties and was always baking something for someone. Even if she had an unexpected visitor, Shirley was quick to pull homemade cookies from the freezer and entertain. Her family meant the world to her and her always-on-time birthday and anniversary cards will never be forgotten.
Shirley is survived by her children, Keith (Jodi) Lawson of Holland, MI, Jim (Dona) Lawson of Gobles, MI, Dale (Vanessa) Topka of East Grand Forks, MN, Sharon (Marc) Selanikio of West Sayville, NY, and Valerie (Nick) Poss of Alvarado; stepson, Larry (Sonny) Lawson; nine grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; brother, Rodney (Georgette) Efterfield of Spanaway, WA; and sister-in-law, Laura Efterfield.
She was preceded in death by her husband, George; her parents; brother, Delmer; and several aunts, uncles, and cousins.
FUNERAL SERVICE: Wednesday, June 27, 2018, at 10:30 AM, in New Hope Lutheran Church, Alvarado, MN.
VISITATION: Tuesday, June 26, from 5:00 PM, with a Prayer Service at 6:30 PM, in New Hope Lutheran; and one hour prior to the Funeral.
INTERMENT: Oaklawn Cemetery, Alvarado, MN.