Shirley Jane Dahlie (nee Ranahan)

Shirley Jane Dahlie (Ranahan)

May 8, 1925 – September 25, 2017

Shirley passed away on September 25, 2017 in White Rock, B.C. after a short illness.

Born in Vancouver to George Francis Ranahan and Bertha Jane Malcolm on May 8, 1925 at Roycroft Private Hospital.

Predeceased by beloved husband Jorgen Dahlie and her adored sister Frances Clarkston.

Spirited, kind, fun, and courageous, Shirley had a positive impact on everyone she met throughout her adventure-filled life. She attended schools in East Vancouver, played the saxophone with the Heather Bells in the White Rose Ballroom in the 1940s, had perfect attendance at the Windsor United Church Sunday School, and played Army and Navy softball in high school.

Throughout her life, she gathered with friends from John Oliver High School and loved playing bridge (and winning) right up to the last months of her life. 

A talented teacher, Shirley selected Smithers for her first teaching job because it paid the highest salary. After accepting the job, she looked Smithers up on a map and then purchased her first winter clothes! She met Jorgen at a holiday dance where she offered to play the drums to help him with his accordion-playing timing. They made time together for the next 71 years, marrying on the homestead next to the potatoe blooms on July 28, 1945.

Together with a guitarist and drummer, they created the band “Three Hits and a Miss.” Shirley cherished making music and creating magic in the dance halls throughout the beautiful Bulkley Valley.

They built their house using wood from an old airport hanger and welcomed four daughters while Jorgen ran a stove oil business and Shirley resumed teaching. 

She encouraged and supported Jorgen’s life-changing educational journey by working in library positions (and making the daughters’ clothes) in Pullman Washington, East Lansing Michigan and at the University of British Columbia.

Shirley and Jorgen enjoyed skiing and travelling while living in West and North Vancouver before moving in late retirement to Langley. Shirley spent her last days in White Rock, where she had spent wonderful summers as a child. 

Shirley had four devoted daughters Annalee Luhman (Tom), Sonja Dahlie (predeceased her in 1990), Susan Anderson (Russell), Rita Dahlie (Earl Schwarzfeld) and delighted in her grandchildren Trevor (Bridgette), Misha (Paula), Erik, Tessa Jane (Clayton), Marla, Glen (Mallory), great grandchildren Jeremiah, Weston Jay, Elizabeth, Alexis Nicole, Keala Sonja, and Hazel Jane. 

Her daughters had a standing practice every May of taking their Mother away for a weekend to celebrate her birthday, Mother’s Day, and the joy of having their treasured Mom to themselves.

Shirley’s infectious laughter, love of life, and friendly ways will be missed by so many.

But she would say, “what a terrific life I have had” and she would put the focus on her fervent wish for the well-being of all others.  

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