Gardening 06

Shirley Mae (Torke) Klink

August 30, 1943 ~ May 28, 2022 (age 78) 78 Years Old
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Shirley Klink Obituary

Shirley Mae (Torke) Klink, 78, of Clyman, died on Saturday, May 28, 2022, with family and loved ones with her during a short and courageous battle with cancer. Shirley was born to Marvin Dennis and Gladys Valborg (Fosso) Torke on Aug. 30, 1943. She grew up in the Madison area, one of five daughters born to her father, a longtime union carpenter, and her mother, a blessed homemaker. The family farm was along U.S. Highway 18 near Deerfield. Her years growing up were spent at McFarland School, West Koshkonong School and Frank Allis Grade School before graduating in 1961 from Monona Grove High School. She worked at a Madison area fertilizer plant after graduating. She then moved to South Dakota, before returning to Wisconsin.

Aaron and Shirley Klink were married at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Clyman on June 19, 1965, after they first met at “The Blew Inn" in Dodge County. He went there to check out the beautiful new waitress. She fell in love with the dashing young U.S. Marine Corps veteran. They remained together 56 years until his death last summer, on July 16, 2021. They eventually settled in the Milwaukee suburb of Oak Creek, where Shirley raised a family with six children and Aaron taught high school biology.

When school let out for the summer each year, the trailer was packed, covered with a tarp and tied down for the 365-mile journey north. The family again was headed Up North for another unforgettable summer adventure. Many summers were spent at Blueberry Lake in Sawyer County. It was there she relaxed, fished, swam, enjoyed life away from the big city and participated in countless unforgettable moments with her family. After Oak Creek, Aaron and Shirley moved to the Racine County community of Wind Lake and later Waterford, but eventually returned to their rural farming roots — and where they first met and were united in marriage. Aaron and Shirley enjoyed the quiet of Clyman, eventually buying a home in the small, rural village where their life together began.

Shirley was well known at the holidays for cooking more than enough so the children could take home plenty in containers. Her Christmas Cookies and fudge were in Tupperware containers everywhere. At other times of the year, friends and family always asked the same thing. Will Shirley be making her fantastic homemade spaghetti? Her recipes may now rest in the hands of her children, but dessert will never be the same without her.

Shirley religiously followed The Farmer’s Almanac. Each spring she meticulously planned her garden and planted as soon as temperatures warmed enough. She was already helping put seeds in the dirt this year, two weeks before becoming too ill to continue. Shirley did whatever was necessary to keep the family together, from getting part-time jobs when times were tough to buying all the best toys she could afford for birthdays and Christmas. Her family always came first, and that will always be remembered about her.

Shirley is survived by her children, Curt (Holly) of Cheyenne, Wyo., Luke of Ladysmith, Vin (Veronica) of Upper Marlboro, Md., Theresa of East Troy, Aaron Jr. of Watertown and Nick of Clyman. She is also survived by her sisters, Sharon and (David-deceased) and Nancy (Ken). She is further survived by her grandchildren, Matthew, Brandon and Joey.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Marvin and Gladys; and her sisters, Jean (Bob) Johnson and JoAnne Torke. At Shirley's request, a public service will not be held. A private family observance will be held at a later date.

The family thanks doctors, nurses, palliative care staff and others who cared tremendously for Shirley at Watertown Regional Medical Center and finally University of Wisconsin-Madison Hospital.

The Berndt-Ledesma Funeral Home in Juneau is assisting the family.


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