Sept. 29, 1937 — March 6, 2019
On March 6, 2019, Shirley Jean Reynolds (Larson), 81, passed away suddenly and unexpectedly in Longview.
Shirley was a lifelong resident of the Longview-Kelso area. She graduated from Kelso High School in 1955, and throughout her life nurtured the long-lasting friendships she made while there. These friendships meant a great deal to her.
After high school, Shirley married Robert Reynolds, and they started a family.
Throughout her life, Shirley, started and ended many jobs in retail, but her primary focus was always the well-being of her family. Shirley would often quit her jobs before summer started so she could spend the long warm days with her children. Later on, she would often talk about the years her children were in elementary school. She loved those days. Idealistic in her vision of what she wanted her family to be, she gave the family portion of her life almost all of her attention. The love she felt for her family was unconditional, surprising, generous, uplifting, devoted, deeply felt, and never-ending. She managed to show up for all of her family members in unique and individual ways. Though at times these acts of devotions weighed on her, she managed to carve out small hobbies and interests for herself.
Years before it was “cool,” she rummaged through the treasures at Goodwill and got a twinkle in her eye when she found the item that would fit perfectly on a shelf or next to a photograph in her home. She spruced up old furniture and made it look beautiful, often times she would give it to a family member in need instead of keeping it for herself. She took great pride in her home, and had a passion for decorating. Her biggest gift was “truly being there for others.”
She loved the way flowers made her and others feel. She was a talented gardener and kept a beautiful yard until she was no longer able. Her kitchen table was often adorned with a fresh bouquet from her garden, usually with daisies, which where her favorite (especially in the Summer). The simple things in life made her happy.
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Shirley chased fun for the entirety of her life, and always managed to find places to stop and laugh as hard as she could, usually surrounded by dear friends. Her laugh was contagious, and in times of trouble, she always managed to find the brightest spot and stay there, instead of dwelling on the negative. Shirley had a knack for being hopeful and optimistic her entire life. She always hoped for the best and constantly rooted for the under-dog.
In her later life, she reconnected with Jack McCoy, and they shared a special, nearly 20-year relationship until his death in 2014. These two laughed deeply together and made up for lost fun they didn’t have in their younger years. They traveled, ate out, raised grandkids, indulged in margaritas, occasionally escaped to the casino, and shared their love of family together. It was a wonderful time in Shirley’s life.
In tandem with this part of Shirley’s life, Shirley took on the responsibility of finishing the raising of two of her grandchildren, and they are eternally grateful for the wisdom, care, support, and guidance she gave them during this time. She changed their lives by being there and showing up. She was deeply loved by every member of her family and will be whole-heartedly missed.
Survivors include her children, Mark Reynolds of Longview, Gaye Glassett (Daryl) of Vader, Kirk Reynolds of Yelm, Wash., and Kirby Reynolds (Maria Baumgardner) of Kelso; nine grandchildren, Cherise Sickles (Michael) of San Clemente, Calif., Kyle Reynolds of Carlsbad, Calif., Jordan Reynolds of Kelso, Holeigh Harris (Kevin) of Longview, William Powell of Longview, Kirk Reynolds Jr., of Yelm, Justin Glassett of Kelso, Casey Glassett (Kendra) of Kelso, and Jessica Glassett (Jeremy Reed) of Kelso; and 17 great-grandchildren.
Shirley was preceded in death by her parents, Clifford and Jewel Larson (Samples); a sister, Rose Larson; her spouse, Robert Reynolds; her special partner, Jack McCoy; and two grandsons, Tyler Reynolds and Jesse Lynn Mathers.
No public memorial is planned. Cremation has taken place under the direction of the Neptune Society.
Contributions in memory of Shirley Reynolds may be made to Youth and Family Link, 907 Douglas St. Longview, WA 98632; www.linkprogram.org. Link’s Mission: To promote positive change in a child and family’s life by engaging and linking them to resources that will result in success in school, having positive friends, a healthy home life and being involved in positive activities.