Obituary-Shirley Marihugh

Shirley Marihugh, age 82, of Esbon, Kansas, went to be with Jesus on Monday, December 25, 2023. She was surrounded by her family at her daughter’s home in Chattanooga, Tennessee. She loved Christmas morning and what a perfect day to be welcomed into Heaven.     
Shirley was born on June 25, 1941 in Long Branch, New Jersey to Arthur and Doris (Dey) Hughes. Growing up mere blocks from the Atlantic Ocean, jumping over crashing waves and digging her toes in the sand, she sought the joy of the sea throughout her life.
As a 1959 graduate of Long Branch High School, Shirley developed a love of learning that continued  throughout her lifetime. Her intellectual prowess, near-photographic memory, and love of history earned her the titles of family crossword puzzle solver, Jeopardy queen, and general fount of wisdom–“go-ask-Mom, she’ll know.” Her mantra was “you’re never bored if you have a book.”    
As a teenager, Shirley and her parents loved to rollerskate. It was at the skating rink where she met a young man from Kansas who was stationed at Fort Monmouth, New Jersey. Thus began a love story spanning nearly 60 years. She was united in marriage on June 27, 1959 to Glenn E. Marihugh. Five children were welcomed to this union: Brenda Kay, Karen Kay, Sandra Kay, Scott Andrew, and Mark Howard. They raised their young family in New Jersey before moving to the Marihugh family hometown of Esbon, Kansas in 1974. What a cultural adaptation that must have been for Shirley and her parents, who also joined in the adventure! She quickly added new and unfamiliar farm-life roles such as wheat truck driver and meals-to-the-field delivery service, to her already vast homemaking skills.   
Shirley was a life-long Christian who exemplified faith, hope, and love, which she considered the foundation of her life. She was baptized and confirmed at the Oakhurst United Methodist Church, Oakhurst, NJ. She was an active member of the Esbon Community Church, led Bible studies, and was a lay speaker for many years. She was a member of the Order of the Eastern Star, PEO, Odessa EHU, and as many bridge/card clubs as possible. She and her mother operated Esbon Ceramic Studio in their home for years. She loved to read, knit, crochet, bake, host family and friends, and play all types of card or board games.
Together Glenn and Shirley had a life filled with incredible experiences and accomplishments as they raised a strong, close, loving family. They shared a love of travel, including road trips across the country with five kids in tow, summers in New Hampshire as proprietors of “Cozy Cabins,” and graduation trips with grandchildren (and their parents, if they were lucky!).
Rejoicing in what she called her most important job–being a mom, grandma and great-grandma, Shirley became known to family and friends alike by her grandma nickname, “Bobbie.” Bobbie was interested in every activity of every grandchild, and though she wasn’t raised around sports, she became an enthusiastic fan if it meant being a part of family gatherings or tailgating opportunities. She was often heard telling her family “it is my life to love you all.”
In 1996, Shirley was invited to join childhood friends in Mazatlán, Mexico. This was the beginning of over 25 years of winter trips to this sunny city on the Pacific coast. Numerous lasting friendships grew from these yearly treks, and she reveled in the opportunity to put her feet in the sand once again. In later years, Glenn and Shirley branched out to international travel which she was determined to continue, even after Glenn’s passing. Trips included visiting Barcelona with family, embarking on two South African safaris, riverboat cruises, shopping European Christmas markets, a trip to Russia, and celebrating her 81st birthday in Zermatt, Switzerland. Wherever Shirley went, whether in her own small community or around the world, she knew the language of friendship and she practiced it well.
She is survived by four of her five children, Brenda Seaman (Lon), Downs, KS; Karen Loeffelman (Eduard), Festus, MO; Sandra Zabel (Steven), Chattanooga, TN;  Mark Marihugh (Kathy), McPherson KS; grandchildren, Jeremy Long (Katie), Julie de Graaf (Derek), Chad Seaman, Candace Seaman (Alfred Jackson), Clark Seaman (Sharla), Cory Loeffelman (Jordan), Melanie Byrd (Keaton), Andrew Zabel (Rebecca Brannon), Sam Zabel, Lily Zabel, Cody Marihugh, Trevor Marihugh (Ina), Bree Marihugh, Lynnea Marihugh, Rhys Marihugh (Hailey Gehle), Trey Marihugh, Brittney Miller (Andrew), Jacob Senger (Jodeci Constantino), Shawn Marihugh, Tiffani Marihugh (Dylan Williams); honorary grandson, Guim Pallas (Elisa), numerous great grandchildren, extended family, and a community of friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Arthur and Doris Hughes, her husband Glenn, and her beloved son, Scott.  
Funeral Services will be held Saturday, January 6th, 2023 at 10:00 a.m. at the Esbon Community Church, Esbon, Kansas with Pastor Rod Rose officiating. Burial will follow in the Odessa Cemetery, Rural Esbon, Kansas.
Visitation will be held Friday, January 5th, 2023 from 1:00-8:00 p.m., at Melby Mortuary, Mankato, Kansas, with family receiving guests from 5-7 p.m.
The family suggests memorials to the Esbon Community Church in care of the Melby Mortuary.
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