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Shirley M Johansen

January 9, 2019

Shirley Marguerite Johansen, nee Petersen, lived a healthy and blessed life of 97 years dedicated to family and friends.  She was born April 5, 1921 to Mabel and Arnold Petersen.  She grew up on the north side of Chicago where she made a circle of life-long friends, and received an Associates Degree from Northwestern University.  


In 1947, Shirley married Robert Johansen, her loving companion until his death in 2008.  They lived in Mount Prospect, Ill. for 54 years where they were devoted parents to David (Jill) Johansen of Lake in the Hills, IL; Nancy (Tom) Dempsey of Rolling Meadows, IL; and Lynn Johansen of Viroqua, WI.   While raising her children, Shirley was very active at St. Mark Lutheran Church of Mt. Prospect, where she served as President of the Women’s Auxiliary.  She later returned to the workforce, becoming the first female Director at Charles Bruning Company/Addressograph Multigraph Corporation.


Shirley was a doting grandma to Clint (Holly) Johansen; Corey (Sara) Johansen;

Eric (Whitney) Dempsey; Steven (Meghan) Dempsey; Hanna, May, and Zoe Chakoian; and adoring GG to great grandchildren Avery, Riley, and Tyler Johansen; Ryan and Jake Dempsey; and Leah and Lincoln Dempsey.  She enjoyed entertaining and travel, and was a die-hard Cubs fan and a proud Norwegian.  She was also an avid card player, including Bridge, but frequently was not dealt good cards.  Until her death on January 8, 2019, she resided for twelve years at Maplewood Terrace in Viroqua, Wisconsin, where she was a study in the art of aging gracefully.


A Memorial service will be held at Maplewood Terrace on Friday, January 18, 2019 at 2 pm. Another memorial service will be scheduled in Chicago at a later date.


In lieu of flowers, memorials can be directed to Bethel Home and Services, or a charity of your choice.

The Thorson Funeral Home and Cremation Service of Viroqua is proudly assisting the family

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