Shirley Edith (Kurtz) McDaniel 1935 - 2021

On Saturday, May 8, 2021, Shirley Edith (Kurtz) McDaniel, loving mother, sister, aunt, friend and educator, passed away at the age of 86.
Shirley Edith Kurtz was born  February 14, 1935, in Forest Grove, Oregon, to George and Mary Kurtz. She grew up in Cherry Grove and attended schools in Cherry Grove and Gaston. Shirley graduated from Gaston High School in 1953, then attended Oregon College of Education, currently Western Oregon University, in Monmouth, Oregon.

During summer breaks from OCE, Shirley worked at an ice cream stand in Gaston where she met a tall and strapping young Byron who stopped by for an ice cream cone. Byron continued to stop by the ice cream stand just to see Shirley and, over time, the stops for ice cream turned into courtship. Byron and Shirley married on November 25, 1960. Together they had a son, Mark.

Shirley’s teaching career began in Newberg, then after three years she went to McMinnville. Shirley was hired in September of 1960 and retired in June of 1991. Her entire 31 years in McMinnville were spent at Adams Elementary School, where she taught first grade and even in the same classroom! Shirley’s colleagues would all say that you never heard a cross word from her. She was always positive and volunteered for LOTS of committee work. Many of her former students described her as the best 1st grade teacher! During her teaching career, she was an active member of Delta Kappa Gamma and P.E.O. (Philanthropic Educational Organization).

Retirement for Shirley meant she had more time to volunteer with SMART Reading, Yamhill County Historical Society, attend Red Hat gatherings, have lunch with the Adams bunch, play Bunco, attend P.E.O. events and, of course, making lace. She loved working on bobbin lace and had several pillow projects going at once. She entered many pieces in county and state fair competitions and had the ribbons to show for it. She even traveled to Bruges, Belgium, known for its beautiful lace, to take lessons. She made many friends from around the world through lace making.

Shirley was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Byron. She is survived by son, Mark; brother, George (Dorothea) Kurtz; and by loving in-laws, nieces, nephews and a host of long-time friends.

A special thank you to Sherry, Shirley’s caregiver from United Healthcare Services. The McDaniel Family could not have managed this last year without Sherry’s invaluable experience, care and commitment. The family will be eternally grateful to her.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to P.E.O., an organization that celebrates the advancement of women and educates women through scholarships, grants, awards and loans. Checks can be made out to: P.E.O. Chapter FH. Mail checks to: Virginia Dunk, Chapter President (P.E.O. Chapter FH) 733 N.W. Morning View Ct. McMinnville OR 97128. To leave condolences, visit


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