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Obituaries » Shirley A. Muehlenthaler

Shirley A. Muehlenthaler

April 13, 1934 - December 1, 2022

Service Date: December 7, 2022

Funeral Home Memorial Services of Iowa

Church Holy Trinity Lutheran Church

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Shirley Ann Muehlenthaler, 88, passed away December 1, 2022.

Visitation will be held from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, December 6, 2022, at Memorial Services of Iowa (4208 N. Ankeny Blvd, Ankeny). A funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, December 7, 2022, at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church (517 SW Des Moines St., Ankeny) with burial immediately following at Ankeny Memorial Gardens. The funeral will be livestreamed at the following link: https://bit.ly/htlc-funeral

Shirley Ann Muehlenthaler was born on April 13, 1934 to George and Lavina Elsen. She was raised with brothers, Charles and Ronald, on a farm near Manson, Iowa. She graduated from Manson High School, then went on to get a degree in nursing from Lutheran Hospital School of Nursing in 1955. She later earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Stevens College in Missouri.

Shirley married John Muehlenthaler, Jr., and had three children: Cynthia, Alan, and David.

Shirley worked in nursing at Lutheran Hospital and after having children, she decided to become an educator. She built the Medical Assistant program at DMACC Ankeny Campus from the ground up. She also assisted in the development of the nursing program at DMACC. She was passionate about educating the next generation of healthcare professionals. As the head of the National Education Association for the State of Iowa, she made multiple trips to Washington D.C. over many years to advocate for the state and community college institutions nationwide since community colleges were a relatively new concept. Shirley met with the Senate and House Members to promote and get funding to further education nationwide.

Shirley had a long, successful career at DMACC for 36 years and received the President’s Day award in 2017. Once retired, she stayed active with DMACC and joined the DMACC Pioneers group and was President of that organization. She organized events and fundraisers for the College to help those in need of assistance when trying to further their education.

Shirley was a giving soul and if you needed help, she was there. She loved to make porcelain dolls with Phyllis. She loved doing crafty things, especially angels. She also played cards with several groups over the years.

Shirley is preceded in death by her parents, George and Lavina; brother, Ronald; husband, John; and son, Alan.

She is survived by her daughter, Cynthia Olinger; son, David (Julie) Muehlenthaler; grandchildren, Michelle Olinger, Jace (Christine) Muehlenthaler, Tyler Muehlenthaler, Nicholas Olinger and Cheyanne Azbill, and Shelby (Whit) Leggett; great-grandchildren, Adler Muehlenthaler, Raelyn Olinger and Gemma Muehlenthaler; and brother, Charles.

In Lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be directed to On With Life.

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