Shirley Jelken, 96, of Le Mars, died Thursday, June 16, 2022, at her home near Le Mars surrounded by her family.
Shirley Anne Mandelkow, the daughter of Emil and Anna (Reelfs) Mandelkow was born Nov. 1, 1925, on a farm near Struble. She attended school in Le Mars and graduated from Le Mars Central High School in 1943.
Following high school, she attended Western Union College in Le Mars where she received her teaching certificate. She taught country school for several years and then substituted at Le Mars Community.
She was united in marriage to Henry Jelken Jr. on June 15, 1947, at St. Johnís Lutheran Church in Le Mars. The couple farmed west of Le Mars for many years. Henry died July 10, 2000.
Shirley was a lifetime and faithful member of St. Johnís Lutheran Church in Le Mars. She was active in the ladiesí aide and Deborah Circle for many years. She helped make quilts for missions for 25 years, and in her earlier years, she taught Sunday School and Catechism.
She was also a member of the Plymouth County Museum, Floyd Valley Hospital Auxiliary, Plymouth County Farm Bureau, and the Le Mars Senior Center.
She enjoyed gardening, crocheting, embroidering, and playing cards with friends and family. Most of all, she loved cooking for her family for their many get togethers.
Survivors include two sons and a daughter: Randall Jelken of Le Mars, Gloria Miller of Ankeny, and Bryon (Faye) Jelken of Le Mars; eight grandchildren: Jodi (Tony) Jacobsen, Jeff (Alisha) Jelken, Tony (Molly) Miller, Danny (Jessi) Miller, Bill (Karen) Miller, Travis (Kim) Jelken, Tyler (Mellissa) Jelken, and Tiffany (Tyler) Junker; 21 great-grandchildren: Katelyn (Max) Aalbers, Alex Jacobsen, Aubrey Jelken, Autumn Jelken, Lauren Miller, AJ Miller, Thomas Miller, Marissa Miller, Maci Miller, Mila Miller, Kinley Miller, Noah Jelken, Isabella Jelken, Gabriel Jelken, Mason Jelken, Carter Jelken, Claire Jelken, Tayler Junker, Taryn Junker, Teagen Junker, and Tyson Junker; her aunt, Barb Reelfs; her in-laws, Dick Jelken and Leona Pierce; and several nieces and nephews.
Preceded in death by her parents, Emil and Anna Mandelkow; her husband, Henry Jelken Jr; a brother, Harold (Margaret) Madelkow; a sister, Helen (Bill) Vogel; and a daughter-in-law, Jeanie Jelken.
Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, June 22, 2022, at St. Johnís Lutheran Church in Le Mars. The Reverend Chris Meier will officiate. Burial will follow at Memorial Cemetery in Le Mars. Visitation with the family present will be from 4-7 p.m., Tuesday, June 21, at Rexwinkel Funeral Home in Le Mars. There will be a prayer service at 7 p.m. Visitation will resume from 9:30 a.m. until service time on Wednesday at the church.
Arrangements are with the Rexwinkel Funeral Home in Le Mars. Expressions of sympathy can be extended at www.rexwinkelfh.com.