Shirley M. Odle, 98, passed peacefully to her Lord, April 24, 2021, at My Blue Heaven Adult Family Home in Centralia, Wash. She was born in Seattle, Wash., to Wilford J. and Hazel S. Cross, Oct. 13, 1922. Her school years were spent in Renton, Wash. She was a bright student, graduating at 16. Shirley also enjoyed cheerleading and was queen her senior year at Renton High School.
Shirley hoped to attend Washington State College, but lacked a science credit for admission. She was accepted by Seattle Pacific College, made up the missing class, and met Glen Odle of Bellevue, Wash., who would become her husband of over 64 years. In May of 1942, Glen was stationed briefly in San Francisco, Calif., during World War II. Shirley, her mother, and Glen’s mother, drove from Seattle to meet him. After several days of whirlwind planning, they married at Glad Tidings Bible Institute. Glen then shipped out to Honolulu, Hawaii, for nine months, and Shirley went back to work in Seattle. During the next few years, she followed Glen to various U.S. duty stations before he was shipped to Europe.
In 1959, they moved to Poulsbo, Wash., with their three girls, and built a lovely home on Hood Canal near Shirley’s sister. They joined a small church where Shirley taught Sunday School and was Sunday School Superintendent. She became Women’s Ministries Director in the 1970’s at the new Christ Memorial Church building. In the 1980’s, they organized the Olympians, a senior ministry. Shirley spent many hours planning trips for the group around the Pacific Northwest.
A hard worker, Shirley started picking cherries at age 11. She owned a stenography shop in Renton and also worked as secretary to a top Boeing boss, who hired for her skills including shorthand and typing 111 words per minute on a manual typewriter. After homemaking for many years, she went to work for Keyport Naval Torpedo Station for 10 years to help pay for the girls’ college.
Shirley and Glen enjoyed tending a big garden, canning, watching sports, and playing golf. She loved flower arranging and was an excellent cook and seamstress who made matching Easter and Christmas dresses for the girls. She was a happy gal whose smile and personality won her many friends. Her faith in Jesus never waivered and her testimony was strong. Shirley was a great prayer warrior and she and Glen supported many missionaries. Shirley published her autobiography “Show Me the Way to Go Home” at age 89. She spent the last eight and a half years at Stillwater Estates and finally, My Blue Heaven.
Shirley was preceded in death by Glen; infant son, Steven; her parents; sister, Margie Youngquist (Phil); brother, Bob Cross; Glen’s parents; and siblings/spouses; and niece, Leann Edelblute.
She is survived by daughters, Kathy Schilperoort (Dave), Nancy Fordney (Kevin), and Cindy Morris (Bill); grandchildren, Scott and Jason Schilperoort (Ginger), Jennifer Pawlak (Jason), Meredith Goble (Blake), Matt Fordney (Kristen), and Ashley Morris; great-grandchildren, Madelyn, Ella, Willem Schilperoort and Jason, and Jenevieve Pawlak; sister-in-law, Ailene Cross; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Memorial donations may be sent to the Glen Odle Scholarship Fund at Gateway Fellowship, 18901 8th Ave. NE, Poulsbo, WA 98370. Arrangements by The Stone Chapel Poulsbo Mortuary at Cherry Grove Memorial Park where she will be laid to rest. An online memorial can be seen at www.poulsbomortuary.com.