Shirley B. (Huckins) Krause, long-time resident of Peabody, Kansas, and loving wife of William (Bill) Verne Krause, died April 13, 2022 in Newton, Kansas. She was 95 years old. Shirley was born at the family homestead between Belleville, Kansas, and Chester, Nebraska, the youngest of five children. As a child, she was inspired by Shirley Temple, who was two years her junior. Like Temple, she loved to sing, dance, and act. She was in starring roles in her school productions and was known to have a special talent for tap dancing. She was very popular in the one-room schoolhouse she attended as a young girl.
Shirley was introduced to Bill Krause on a blind date just after Bill had returned from serving in World War II. Eventually, she succumbed to his charms and they were married on August 11, 1946. They remained happily married for sixty-five years until Bill’s death did they part in 2011. Shirley helped support Bill while he attended Kansas State University, pursuing a degree in journalism. After graduation, the young couple worked in the newspaper business, buying their first local newspaper in Konawa, OK, in 1952, and then purchasing the Peabody Gazette-Herald in 1954. During the 43 years of operating the Peabody newspaper, they also acquired five other small-town newspapers and had shares in two others. Eventually, through sales and consolidations they reduced their holdings to the Peabody Gazette-Bulletin, which they sold in 1997 due to Bill’s failing health.
Shirley and Bill were a complementary team in all their endeavors and they could dance with the best of them – doing the Jitterbug, Charleston, you name it. Shirley was the loving mother of two daughters, providing the family with a happy home and a solid upbringing. She was an avid bridge player and a very active Peabody socialite. She was a good, kind, thoughtful, generous, beautiful person, inside and out, and ever so fashionable. Remarkably elegant and refined, she excelled in social graces and had exceptional style. She made the world a better place for all who knew her.
Shirley was preceded in death by her husband, William V. Krause; father, William O. Huckins; mother, Esther Mitchell Huckins; sister, Guila Huckins George; brothers, Gerald, Willis, and Doyle Huckins; and nephew, Richard A. George.
Survivors include her two daughters, Koni Foster of Franklin, North Carolina, and Denise Krause, of Ashland, Oregon; five grandchildren – William, Duane and Adam Jones, Andrea Adeyanju, and Alexander Krause; seven great-grandchildren; and niece Sharyn (Huckins) Baybayan of Chester, Nebraska.
The funeral service will be at 10:00 a.m., Tuesday, April 19, 2022, at Peabody United Methodist Church in Peabody, Kansas. Burial will follow the service at 2:30 p.m. at Chester City Cemetery in Chester, Nebraska. Visitation will be held the evening prior from 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., Monday, April 18, 2022 at Petersen Funeral Home in Newton, Kansas.
Please send memorial donations to the Peabody Historical Museum at 214 N. Walnut St., Peabody, KS 66866, with Peabody Printing Museum in the subject line.