Cover photo for Shirley Bogenschultz's Obituary
Shirley Bogenschultz Profile Photo
1934 Shirley 2022

Shirley Bogenschultz

July 26, 1934 — August 31, 2022



Shirley Joann Bogenschultz, of Sheboygan, Wisconsin, passed away on August 31, 2022, into the arms of her Heavenly Father. At 88 years young, a zest for life, contagious smile, oozing positivity, kindness and grace, quick to laugh, always a compliment, Shirley loved well, and was loved well in return. Her sunny exuberance brightened the lives of all who knew her. 

Shirley was born on July 26, 1934 to Milton John (Leith) Schultz, Sr. and Vera Matilda (Pehrson) Schultz in Salina, Kansas, both from pioneer immigrant families who farmed and raised livestock. She was the fifth of six siblings, growing up during the Depression and WWII, on a wheat farm. 

Shirley graduated from Salina High School, Class of 1952. She earned her B.A. in Elementary Education from Marymount College, May 28, 1956. 

At a college dance, she met William Bogenschultz, from Sheboygan, while he was stationed at the Smoky Hill Air Force Base, during the Korean War.  The next evening, Nov. 7, 1953, they saw "From Here to Eternity" and so Shirley and Bill would be united for fifty-six years of wedded bliss and bedlam, raising six children and hosting ten foreign students. 

They were engaged on Valentine's Day 1955, and married on December 22, 1955 at St. John's Lutheran Church in Salina. Shirley taught at Belvue Elementary, while Bill studied veterinary medicine at Kansas State University. They had two children, Janet and David, by the time Bill graduated, with honors, in May, 1960. 

In June, 1960, they co-founded the Animal Clinic with Dr. Vernon Thieleke in Sheboygan. Shirley was the glue that held everything together in the early years, scheduling office visits in their house, and radioing farm calls, until the clinic was built. 

In 1960, Shirley joined the American Association of University Women (AAUW). For 62 years, Shirley worked on activities supporting equity for women in all areas of their lives, earning an Honorary Lifetime Membership. 

They joined First United Lutheran Church in 1962. Shirley appreciated the fellowship of her Bible and book groups. They also attended Shepherd of the Bay Lutheran Church, in Ellison Bay. 

Their family grew, adding Matthew, Sara, Mark, and John. Sundays were family time.  They visited grandparents and extended family, piling the kids in the station wagon. Shirley remembered birthdays.  She was a great cook, and baked pies and cookies. When she hugged you, you knew it, and nothing felt better. She filled the room with sunshine.

Shirley and Bill made lifelong friends through their neighbors, school years, the Air Force, Animal Clinic, Lakeland College alumni, AAUW, Rotary, church, deer hunting and fishing trips, Door County, Packer games, book groups, and everywhere they went. They joined the YMCA, John Michael Kohler Arts Center, the Elks Club, People to People, and the Sports Core. 

They enjoyed parties to celebrate occasions and holidays, playing silly games, singing around the piano, and summer fires on the beach. Spontaneous visits were always welcomed. On nights they dressed up to go out, Shirley transformed from Mom into a movie star, with lipstick good-bye kisses in a cloud of heavenly perfume, leaving her children awe-struck. 

Shirley and Bill joined People to People in 1974. David, Matt, Sara, Mark and John were Esslingen exchange students. Shirley and Bill were American parents to five students: Konrad Finckh, Florian Garnich, Gunther Birkel, Thomas Meyer, and Stefan Ruth, 1974 - 1984. Ute Frommer, in 1975, joined in, too.  In 1986, Verena Ruth, Stefan’s sister in John’s exchange in 1983-84, was hosted by Shirley and Bill for ten months. They created a lifetime of international friendships and a family legacy lasting five decades between families, and spanning continents, described in the PTP October 2022 Newsletter article about Shirley.           ("Shirley Bogenschultz: Lifetime of International Friendships Creating a Family Legacy”)


As empty nesters, they hosted a Rotary student, Kaimook Saelee, from Mae Hong Son, Thailand, in 1986-87. The whole family visited Kaimook and her family, riding elephants, swimming by waterfalls. Last August, Shirley planned to visit again at 88.  

They hosted veterinarians Heinrich Brand (Germany), and Neils (Denmark), AFS student Martin (Sweden), and enjoyed long friendships with Don Sehata (Tokyo) and AFS teachers, Oraphin and Boworn (Thailand).

From August 1983 to July 1999, Shirley was a teacher’s assistant for Lakeshore Technical Institute in Sheboygan, teaching Hmong adults. She enjoyed her adult students and celebrating Hmong New Year with her family. 

Annual Florida trips with extended family rejuvenated them, enjoying sun and friends.  With Shirley's siblings, they cruised to Alaska and Bermuda. They visited the Cayman Islands, Japan, Thailand and Europe. Door County, especially Ellison Bay and Newport, were special places with sixty years of family memories, picking cherries, and picnics. 

Shirley relished her retirement, and more time with Bill, family, friends, trips, and her flourishing flower garden. Shirley was an avid reader and library user, devouring magazines, clipping articles to mail with a cheerful letter.  She enjoyed plays, concerts, nature walks, and thrift store gems.

Shirley adored being a grandma, doting on her grandchildren, going to the beach, and dyeing Easter eggs. She loved a full house for the holidays, everyone home, cooking, baking, and talking around the table.  When the great grandchildren came, she was thrilled, smiling ear to ear. 

Bill was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease and retired in 1993 to enjoy family, friends, trips, and going places. Shirley always gave him positive encouragement and support. 

The family is grateful that Shirley enjoyed close ties with family, neighbors and friends that kept her heart happy the ten years she lived without Bill. 

Shirley wasn’t slowing down much at 88 years young. More than one person has called her a “little dynamo.” She was still planning to travel, still maintaining life-long friendships, still actively gardening, still enjoying her neighbors, friends, and being a member of People to People, AAUW, her churches in Sheboygan and Ellison Bay, and very involved in the lives of her six children, their spouses, her grandchildren, and her great grandchildren.

Shirley enjoyed a vibrant life, full of love and grace. She created a better life for everyone who loved her. The family is grateful that they were all together and shared so many wonderful times all the days and years of her big, beautiful, loving life. 

Shirley Joann Bogenschultz is survived by her six children; Janet Vera Bogenschultz (Bill Costine), Beacon, NY;  David Matthew (Barbara) Bogenschultz, Lake Elmo, MN; W. Matthew (Jeanne Freiburg) Bogenschultz, St. Paul, MN; Sara Beth (Ken) Born, Sheboygan, WI; Mark Stuart (Yo) Bogenschultz, Tokyo, Japan; and John James (Carol Mills) Bogenschultz, Boynton Beach, FL; her eleven grandchildren; Eva (Chris) Vanderbosch, Marta (Corey) Vanderbosch, and Matthew Bogenschultz; Nathan and Calla Jo Ann Born; William C. Bogenschultz; J. Maximilian Bogenschultz; Jasper Kai Bogenschultz; Jonah, Archie, and Maren Mills; and five great grandchildren Griffin Joseph, Grant William and Grace Anne Vanderbosch; Aubrey Elaine and Sophie Lynn Vanderbosch; brother James G. Schultz (Daly City, CA formerly Anchorage, AK); brother-in-law Larry Sommer (Crandon, WI); sisters-in-law Elizabeth (Jim) Schultz Cooke (Richmond, VA); Frances Fitz-Kennedy (Chambersburg, PA); and ten nephews and eight nieces, many great nephews and great nieces; relatives and dear friends.  

In addition to Shirley's loving husband of 56 years, Dr. William C. Bogenschultz, Shirley is also preceded in death by her parents, Milton John Schultz, Sr. and Vera Matilda (Pehrson) Schultz; her daughter-in-law, Lynne Rich Bogenschultz; her father-in-law and mother-in-law William M. and Phebe (Noel) Bogenschuetz; her sisters, Gertrude Pennington Harper and Mildred J. (Schultz) Kennedy; her brothers, Rear Admiral Milton J. Schultz, Jr. USN and Colonel Ernest G. Schultz, USAF; her sisters-in-law Janice (Bogenschultz) Sommer, Mary Jane (Strowig) Schultz, Luella (Grant) Schultz, and Marion Lockard; her brothers-in-law Russell Harper and Charles Kennedy; nephews Milton Schultz, III and Mark Pennington; and many relatives and dear friends. 

A visitation and service are planned for Saturday, August 5th, 2023.  Visitation is 9:30 a.m - 11:00 a.m., Memorial Service and Celebration of Life at 11:00 a.m., followed by fellowship, lunch and a celebration of the life and spirit of Shirley Bogenschultz, at First United Lutheran Church, 2401 Kohler Memorial Drive, Sheboygan, WI.  The service will be live-streamed and recorded on the church’s website and YouTube channel:

At her celebration of life, we encourage you to wear the colorful, vibrant clothing that Shirley loved to wear to celebrate her life. 

Shirley will join her husband Bill, and be interred together at Greenlawn Memorial Park in a private committal service.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to any of these groups in Shirley's memory: 

Sharon Richardson S. Richardson Community Hospice, W2850 WI-28, Sheboygan Falls, WI 53085

American Association of University Women (AAUW) Sheboygan, P.O. Box 244, Sheboygan, WI  53082 - 0244

People to People, Sheboygan Chapter, Rich Miesfeld, Treasurer, 2047 Marion Lane, Sheboygan, WI, 53083

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Shirley Bogenschultz, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Saturday, August 5, 2023

9:30 - 11:00 am (Central time)

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Celebration of Life

Saturday, August 5, 2023

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Central time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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