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Shirley Darlene Hughes

July 26, 1933 August 22, 2019
Shirley Darlene Hughes
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Obituary for Shirley Darlene Hughes

Shirley Darlene Hughes was the first born daughter to Willy (Bill) and Venera Hoagland coming into this life on July 26, 1933. She would be joined later by six sisters and one little brother through the years as the Hoagland family expanded.
Growing up in Melba, Shirley attended the local schools, and alongside her sisters made quite an impression playing and coaching softball whenever and wherever they could find a game whether it be a school or church league. Shirley loved the game so much that after she was married and had children, she would still play. After having Marchia, she would have to run out to her car in between innings to nurse her crying baby. Her love of the game and dedication to play has passed down through her daughters, granddaughters, and great-granddaughters. In fact, she was so excited when her oldest granddaughter signed up to play ball, she mailed her glove to her to use, and wrote “I love you” in the pocket of the glove.
As a young woman, Shirley loved having the opportunity to work in the fields with her father, Bill, as well as spending many hours learning the fine arts of cooking, baking, and candy making alongside her mother, Venera. The countless hours spent working in corn and making delicious treats helped establish her strong work ethic and reputation for having a master’s touch to make even the temperamental divinity.
She fell in love with and married Henry (Hank) Hughes in June of 1953, and they had four children together, Marchia, Delwyn, Tootsie (Loretta), and Benjie. Family has always been the cornerstone of her life and her faith, so when the opportunity came last year to begin the process of sealing of her family for time and eternity, she was ecstatic to have help from her family in making this dream a reality for her.
Shirley was a proud member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, serving in the primary and young women’s for much of her life. Some of her favorite memories came from girls’ camp as well serving those in need and living her faith.
She loved to serve and help others, particularly her family. Years ago, she made the trek from Melba over to Pleasant Hill, Oregon, to help Marchia and family move up to Tillamook. Driving her pickup behind the large Uhaul truck, she had Keisha and I with her, and the trip was going smoothly until we got into the outskirts of Salem, and we got stopped at a red light, but the Uhaul did not. I still recall her first, fairly calm, “Oh dear,” as it kept lumbering down the road. The next one, slightly more urgent in nature, came as the Uhaul disappeared from our line of sight. Now this was in the days before cell phones or GPS. The third, “Oh dear,” now included the nervous combing of her hand through her hair. Finally the light changed, and we began moving, only Grandma, not sure of where to go took a wrong turn, and we ended up heading back the way we had just come. Grandma’s “Oh dears,” came much more frequently when she couldn’t find the Uhaul, and I thought she was going to pull all her hair out at this point as Keisha anxiously giggled in the middle. Finally, I convinced her that we were headed south instead of north, and we pulled over on the side of the road and walked around a small pond to find a fishermen to confirm, we were indeed headed south. We got back on the road, going the right direction, and finally found everyone waiting in a store parking lot for us to come in view. We didn’t again lose sight of the Uhaul on that trip.
So many of us felt her motherly love and compassion in our lives. She especially loved holding and spending time with the little ones. No matter the aches and pains life tossed her way, Shirley could be found cuddling first her own children, then countless nieces and nephews, and finally onto her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. The delight we found in spending time with her is still carried in our hearts today.
Shirley worked hard throughout her life taking on various jobs from driving bus, to being a hostess, and even helping to run mail routes. It was well documented that she was always prepared for whatever came her way as she carried everything but the kitchen sink in those large hand bags that she favored so much. I can attest to the fact that more than one wrench could be found in the pockets and folds.
Shirley also loved to play. She loved to go camping and fishing up in the mountains. She was well known for her patience in casting a line into the lake or creek waters and waiting for the fish to bite; for her painstaking dedication to gathering berries once they ripened; and having an eagle eye to ensure you placed those berries in the bucket and not in your mouth while you helped her gather, but it was worth the wait because the jams and breads she made from those harvests were manna from heaven.
While time spent in the mountains for Shirley usually included fishing and berry picking, it also included some near misses with the animal life as well, specifically the bear kind. One year while up picking berries with her daughter, Marchia, and son-in-law, Paul, and family, their dog Sparky caused Paul great alarm when he believed the dog to be alerting to a bear nearby. Paul immediately started pushing everyone off the hillside and down to the vehicle. Grandma Shirley was not impressed. When it came to berries, I have no doubts she would have fought a bear if it meant she could pick more berries. No bear every showed up that day, but you can rested assured Grandma never let my dad forget about that day and why there were no huckleberries in his pancakes.
On another trip into the woods, fishing this time up off Lick Creek, we had been out fishing for some time, so some of us had wandered back to the area we had parked in order to grab some lunch. While there, a forest service ranger pulled in to inform us that a bear had been wreaking havoc in the area, and we needed to use extreme caution. All of us realized that Grandma Shirley was still out fishing, and we hadn’t seen her in hours, so we immediately went off in groups trekking up the creek, down the creek, and up the road in the vehicle to find her. Once again when we found her, she didn’t seem too worried about the bear as she was more interested in the fish she had caught.
Another talent Grandma Shirley possessed was in playing beautiful music. Many a night by the fire on a family camping trip was made complete as she played song after song on her accordion.
Shirley was called home on August 22, and I believe she was greeted in a joyous reunion with her parents, her three siblings, and hugged tightly by her son, Delwyn as she crossed over the veil. And I wouldn’t doubt they are playing a very competitive game of pinochle even as we speak.

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3:00 PM 8/28/2019 3:00:00 PM
Melba Cemetery

Melba, ID

Melba Cemetery
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Melba Cemetery Final Resting Place

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