Shirley Mae Tibbett Friel, age 84 of Boise, Idaho passed away June 23, 2020 at the home of her son surrounded by her children, several grandchildren and great grandchildren, and other beloved family members.
Shirley was born October 3, 1935 in the family home along the “Old Oregon Trail” in Nyssa, OR to William Tibbett and Julia Winfrey Tibbett. Her sister Mary, age 20 served as mid wife, helping to welcome Shirley into the world. When she was six months old, her family moved to the state of California, as the rest of the family piled into the family car and were ready to pull out, her mother, asked, “who has Shirley?” They had left her wrapped in blankets on a bed in the house! The family stayed in California until she was in the second grade and then traveled back to Oregon and then on to Idaho to be closer to family. Shirley completed her education in the Wilder and Homedale School systems, graduating from Homedale High School in 1954. Growing up as the youngest of eight, with thesignificant age difference of 23 years between Shirley and her oldest brother, Shirley was blessed to growup with many nieces and nephews who were more like brothers and sisters. She recalled fondly those growing up days in her big extended family. According to Shirley, the Fourth of July celebration in her family was bigger than Christmas and family came from all over the country to her parent’s farm where copious amounts of good home cooking was eaten, along with her with mother’s mouthwatering cobbler and gallons and gallons of ice cream!
It was in high school that Shirley was to meet the love of her life, Marvin Friel. Shirley was the homecoming queen and Marvin homecoming king and captain of the football team, high school sweethearts. They married in 1954 and worked together to raise a family of four active children who played sports, were active in scouting and the community. Shirley stated that when she joined the Friel family, Faye and Ora became her second parents and she gained three sisters in Melba, Myrna, and Wanda and their husbands became her second family. As their families grew, she gained a whole new tribe of nieces and nephews.
As their children grew, she and Marvin had more time together and enjoyed Ballroom, Square and Round Dancing. And yes, much to the embarrassment of their teenage children, they BOTH had the full square dancing regalia! Tragically in 1983, at age 47, Marvin passed away from a sudden heart attack. Shirley, a young widow with a seventeen year old son still at home, quickly had to learn how to pick up the pieces and carryon for herself, her children and grandchildren. She went to work as a Clerk for the United States Bureau of Reclamation, eventually retiring from the Federal Probation and Parole Office under the United States Court System.
In her childhood she remembered frequently moving, as her mother was one who would not “let moss grow under her feet.” As a result of this Shirley lived on the same street, in two different houses next door to each other for almost three decades, the last house for 20 years. Shirley sold the family home and bought herself a cute little house in Boise’s north end, close to where she worked at the United States Court House. Many people commented on her beautiful flowers and her cute little “Gingerbread House.”
She enjoyed spending time with her children, grandchildren, gardening and her little dog Molly. In 1997 Shirley married Kenneth Richey, the marriage ending in 2002. She and Ken enjoyed traveling and RV'ing, spending a few winters in Arizona and made frequent trips to SISCRA in Donnelly, Idaho.
Shirley had three passions in life; her family, her pets and going to thrift shops/yard sales. Her favorite times were with her family, she loved watching her grandchildren and great grandchildren grow and treasured the time spent with each. She was especially proud of her children and all they accomplished.
Shirley is survived by her children; Fred (Diane) of Boise, Terry of Caldwell, Melissa of Hartsburg, MO and Jeff of Boise. She is also survived by grandchildren; Jennifer Dille (Mason), San Francisco, CA, Meaghen Friel (Van Hoang) Boise, Audrey Rush (Jon), Boise, Zoe Friel, Boise, Tim Friel, Caldwell, Mica Burton (Matthew), Cape Coral, FL and six great grandchildren. She is survived by sister-in-law Wanda Spath (Lonnie) and a multitude of nieces, nephews and great nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, brothers and sisters, in-laws, and sister in-laws and brother-in-laws.
Services will be held at Dakan Funeral Chapel at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, July 1, 2020 in Caldwell, ID with grave site service following immediately at Marsing-Homedale Cemetery. The service will be live streamed on the Dakan Funeral Chapel website.
In light of the spike in COVID cases in the area, Shirley’s children encourage those in the high risk category to stay home and watch the services through the live stream. Our Mother would above all want everyone to stay healthy and safe.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Shirley Tibbett Friel, please visit our floral store.