Gustafson, Shirley S.

Shirley S. Gustafson, 89, of Galesburg, Ill. died at 9:05 am Monday, March 3, 2014 in Heartland Health Care Center.

She was born March 11, 1924 in Galesburg, the daughter of Elmer and Sylvia Alters Sandeen. She married Phillip H. Gustafson on July 10, 1944 in Jacksonville, Fla. He preceded her in death on December 19, 1992.

She is survived by two daughters, Jane (and James) Mudd of Galesburg and Janet (and William) Rucks of Mount Pulaski, Ill. and three grandchildren, Christian Gustafson, Kristin (and Brian Smith) Rucks and Christopher “Joey” Mudd. She is preceded in death by her parents, her husband, a son, Phillip L. Gustafson, a brother and a sister.

Shirley spent most of her life in Galesburg. She attended Galesburg High School, graduating in 1942. During WWII she was employed decoding messages and also worked for an orthopedic surgeon at the Mayo Clinic in Galesburg. For over 25 years she was employed as a secretary for school district #205 in Galesburg. Shirley served as an election judge for many years.

Shirley was a member of the Trinity Lutheran Church. She belonged to “The Tie That Binds” quilting guild at church. She was a lifetime member of the PTA, was also a member of the Women’s Auxiliary of the VFW #2257 and DAR. She loved to golf, enjoyed playing bridge and spending time with her grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held 2 pm Sunday, March 9, 2014 at Hinchliff-Pearson-West Galesburg Chapel. Dr. Rev. Tom Larsen will officiate. Visitation will be 1-2 pm Sunday at the chapel. Cremation will be accorded. Burial will be at Memorial Park Cemetery. Memorials may be made to Juvenile Diabetes or Guardian Angel Humane Society. Online condolences may be made at