Born: August 10, 1945
Died: October 18, 2013
Shirley Ann (Major) Bauhof was a sweet, beautiful, classy, talented, tenacious and gifted woman with many hobbies. She had a quiet intensity and a great sense of humor. She loved to bargain shop, garden, pick strawberries, cook and be with her family. She made a simple and relaxing home filled with healthy cooking, gardens filled with beautiful flowers, and lives filled with her love. She had the uncanny ability to know the needs of her children and husband and when they got too busy in life; she practiced a lifestyle of simplicity. Shirley often told her husband, “Don’t sweat the small stuff.” Shirley taught her children to do what is right, to respect people, and to show compassion to others, especially those who are among the “least of these” (Matthew 25:40).
Shirley loved to sing songs to Jesus. At a very young age, she learned to sing in the Eskimo language from her Grandma Jessie. Shirley is the oldest of eight siblings. She always looked forward to those special times she was with her family from Alaska and Colorado and treasured them deeply in her heart.
Some family memories of Shirley’s children include water fights, witnessing Shirley teasingly putting ice down her husband’s shirt, giving her daughters the “10-foot-rule”, and kicking her husband out of the kitchen while cooking dinner. Shirley would ring the triangle dinner bell for meals; her kids were somewhere in the neighborhood and would come running home.
She had an unconditional love for her family, and a very special place in her heart for her three grandkids. Her grandkids showed a lot of love for their Grandma; they visited with her often at Rockhill Mennonite Nursing Home, many times playing their musical instruments and singing to her. They went on walks together and sometimes they fought over who would push their Grandma when she was in her wheelchair. The grandkids enjoyed taking her out to the lovely gift shop at Grandma’s, taking time to choose which “penny” candies to buy that day.
Shirley was a dear wife and best friend of Ken, her husband. This summer they threw a large elegant party to celebrate 50 years of marriage. At this party, memories were shared. Shirley was born in Nome, Alaska (on the Bering Sea) on August 10, 1945 and later moved to Fairbanks. She excelled in the Fairbanks schools; and, upon graduating as top commercial student of her class, she received an outstanding award in Office Practices/Business Administration while donning her engagement ring accepted at age 17. Attending Denali Bible Chapel in Fairbanks at age 15, Shirley met Ken Bauhof (age 19) the evening of June 25, 1961. Ken had driven to Alaska from Philadelphia, PA on a whim, and was in love with Shirley at first sight (Ken had just arrived in Fairbanks only a couple hours earlier). They married on August 31, 1963. Ken and Shirley started a new adventure moving to Pennsylvania in 1966 which became their permanent residence, except for one year of their service in 1971 at North Star Bible Camp at Hatcher Pass, Alaska.
Together they share one of the greatest love stories of all time upon which a novel should be written. A story of undying love in the brokenness of life, the kind of love Christ has for all. Over the years, they enjoyed a hobby they had in common and that is gardening; they spent many hours leisurely tending their gardens together. Another common joy they shared is their adoration for Alaska. They traveled there periodically with their daughters, and Shirley often times extended her stay with family.
Shirley was a wonderful friend to many and worked hard to maintain relationships in authentic community. Her closest friends were her “Steel Magnolias”. These women ventured out to Rice’s Market, Bible studies, garage sales and restaurants together. In recent years, she and her nursing home roommate, Anna, enjoyed watching cooking shows. Shirley would always light up when people visited with her.
Shirley overcame the odds in so many ways, marching to the beat of her own drum. Words cannot attempt to describe the wonderful example she was and continues to be to those around her. Shirley was selfless in so many ways, a brave woman, and full of courage, strength and perseverance. She was faithful in helping others. Shirley is an amazing creation of God. She has run and finished the race.
But most importantly, Shirley taught her children and others what the love of Jesus looks like. And how to suffer well. That life is more than rules, more than trying to be the hero. It’s all about God and his unfailing, never-ending love for us. “That while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)
“No one’s ever seen or heard anything like this,
Never so much as imagined anything quite like it—
What God has arranged for those who love him.”
1 Corinthians 2:9
For Shirley as Wife, Daughter, Mother, Grandmother, Sister, Aunt, Cousin, Friend, her family is most thankful.
To all of the staff at Rockhill Mennonite Community who lovingly took care of Shirley this last part of her life as faithful Christ-like servants and friends, your care was excellent. To all of the friends, companions and caregivers alike who journeyed into Shirley’s story and took a long walk side-by-side together, Shirley’s family is grateful for all of your priceless love. To all of Shirley’s family in Alaska and Colorado, from growing up and to the present, to her mother, Martha Major, who brought Shirley into the world, and who brought Shirley’s sisters with her to visit frequently these recent years, your love is amazing. And to her father, William (Bill) L. Major, who supported Ken and Shirley in any endeavor they chose. To all of you, her family couldn’t have done it without you.
To Sovereign God, you have held Shirley in Your hands and gave her life to the full. You dreamt up a beautiful creation when you made Shirley. You have seen her through!
Shirley Anne Bauhof was preceded in death by her father, William (Bill) L. Major.
Friends and neighbors are invited to a memorial service in Heritage Hall at Calvary Church of Souderton (820 Route 113, Souderton, PA 18964) at 7:00 PM Monday October21, 2013 to celebrate Shirley meeting her Jesus and loved ones face-to-face, and to celebrate her restoration and being made whole, praising our Savior for making all things new. Visitation with the family will be from 5:30 PM – 7:00 PM.
Condolences may be sent to Ken Bauhof, 129 Tedwill Drive, Fountainville, PA 18923 and/or Martha Major (Shirley’s mom), 2761 Old Chena Ridge Road, Fairbanks, AK 99709.
In lieu of flowers, please send donations in honor of Shirley for a memorial fund to: Living Hope Community Church, 106 South Main Street, Dublin, PA 18917.
Arrangements by: Anders-Detweiler Funeral Home & Crematory, 130 East Broad Street, Souderton, Pennsylvania 18964. To send online condolences to the family, visit www.andersfh.com