Shirley Pearson

Obituary of Shirley Mae Pearson

Shirley Mae Pearson (92) of Lynnwood, WA peacefully transitioned to her prepared home in Heaven on July 6, 2023. There will be a service at 11am Saturday, July 22nd at Bethany Christian Assembly in Everett, WA, with an optional viewing and reception following. Burial will take place on Monday, July 24th at Olney Cemetery in Pendleton, OR.


Shirley was born in Miles City, MT to Roy and Hazel Ferguson on July 1, 1931 and had one younger brother, Gale Ferguson, to whom she was very close.  She grew up as a country kid caring for and raising farm animals, including milk cows and a band of sheep that she adored and to whom she would teach school, (her little brother was required to attend as well).


Her love for teaching brought her to Wheaton College, IL, and then to Seattle Pacific University, Seattle, where she earned her teaching degree and taught in the Seattle, Northshore, Everett and Edmonds Public School Districts. Leading up to her college education, she had a ball working for the telephone company. Shirley had an absolute love for music and you could always find her singing and playing piano. She hosted a weekly live radio show in Montana, as well as teaching at the local schoolhouse before heading to SPU.


During her early years of teaching in Seattle, she was introduced by close friends to Gaylord Myron Pearson, with whom she fell in love and married in Miles City, MT on July 1, 1961 (her birthday). Shirley & Gaylord had 3 children, Denna, Ross and Kari, and once the children came along, Shirley decided to put her teaching career on hold to focus on family and substitute teach when she could. When her youngest was in the 7th grade Shirley joined the office staff at Bethany Christian Assembly where she worked faithfully for over 25 years. When asked what her actual title was at BCA, Pastor Rollin Carlson said, ‘She was the Boss!’


Strong in their faith together, they settled in Seattle and attended church at Calvary Temple, and upon building their home together in Lynnwood, WA in 1968, made Bethany Christian Assembly in Everett their church home.  Shirley loved playing games, visiting until all hours of the night, cooking and entertaining, the holidays with family and friends, as well as teasing. A passion of hers was playing piano and singing with Gaylord while he played ‘the saw’, and had the kids join in with their instruments and sing along as they grew up. Shirley had a heart for people. From kids to the elderly, working with missions and the homeless, sometimes bringing them into her own home to have a place to stay and a warm meal. Her favorite places in WA were Home, Leavenworth, and Lake Chelan.  She was known for her love and commitment to family and friends, her compassion for people, her hospitality, musical talents, and incredible inner strength.


Shirley is survived by her children: Denna and Erik Hurd of Albuquerque, NM, Ross and Michelle Pearson of Woodinville, WA, Kari Pearson and Scott Rockenfield. Grandchildren: Neal and Brittny Kunkle, Kylie and Evan Crow, Taylor and Daniel McKee, Taylor Pearson, Delynn Hurd, Devin Hurd, Rockson Pearson, Great-Grandchild: Cayden Hurd.  Brother Gale Ferguson, brother-in-law Duane Barber, sister-in-law Evelyn Pearson, and many nieces and nephews Mike, Don, Yolanda, Tim, Tom, Jim, Falina, Glen, Jerry, Jon, Judy, Janet, Jodi, Jerenda, cousin Donna Steiber as well as other dearly-loved extended family and friends. Shirley is preceded in death by her parents, Roy and Hazel Ferguson, brother-in-law Dean Pearson, sister-in-law Alice Barber, sister-in-law Gayle Ferguson, nephews Don Nash, Roy Ferguson, Paul Ferguson, her dishwater sister Zola Finch & Lloyd Finch.


Funeral Service

11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Saturday, July 22, 2023
Bethany Christian Assembly
2715 Everett Avenue
Everett, Washington, United States
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