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Shirley Mae Pankow

July 10th, 1933 - March 28th, 2024

Shirley Mae Pankow (Eckholt) died peacefully March 28, 2024, after a short illness of pneumonia. She was born July 10, 1933, on a farm in the Red River Valley of Minnesota. She spent her childhood in the Lidgerwood/Hankinson area of North Dakota where her father managed local grain elevators.


After graduation from high school, she quickly earned a teaching certificate and taught at a rural one-room school for a couple of years. She later worked as a bookkeeper at a bank in Hankinson, North Dakota where she met her future husband, Herbert Pankow. They were married on October 24, 1955, and remained married until Herbert’s death on July 14, 2002.


Shortly after they were married, Shirley worked as a bookkeeper for a large elevator firm in Moorhead, MN, in order to put her husband through college at NDSU. Soon after graduation, they left for Littleton, CO, where Herbert was employed by Gates Rubber Company for 35 years as a mechanical engineer. In 1971, they bought a farm by Keenesburg, CO, and lived there for the rest of their lives.


Shirley was a charter member of the Shepard of the Hills Lutheran Church in Littleton. She was for many years a member of Grace Lutheran Church in Hudson, CO, and a treasurer and president of the local chapter of the Homemakers Club.


She raised and is survived by four sons of whom she was proud of: Jeff of Tulsa, OK, Glen of Boulder, CO, Ross of Keenesburg, CO, and Curtis of Kersey, CO. She is also survived by a sister Sharon Greco of Morrison, CO, sister-in-law Bernice Timmerman of Brighton, CO and a large extended family.


Shirley was a 22-year long survivor of multiple stage-four cancers.


She will be sorely missed.

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