Shirley B. (Huckins) Krause – The Kansan

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Shirley B. (Huckins) Krause, longtime resident of Peabody, Kansas, and beloved wife of William (Bill) Verne Krause, died on April 13, 2022 in Newton, Kansas. She was 95 years old. Shirley was born on the family estate 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 played leading roles in her school’s productions and was known to have a special talent for tap dancing. She was very popular in the one-room school she attended as a young girl.

Shirley was introduced to Bill Krause on a blind date right after Bill returned from serving in World War II. Eventually she succumbed to his charms and they were married on August 11, 1946. They were married for sixty-five years until Bill’s death, they separated in 2011. Shirley helped support Bill as he he was attending Kansas State University, pursuing a degree in journalism. After graduating, the young couple worked in the newspaper business, buying their first local newspaper in Konawa, OK, in 1952, then buying the Peabody Gazette-Herald in 1954. During the 43 years of operation of the Peabody newspaper, they also acquired five other small town newspapers and held shares in two others. Eventually, through sales and consolidations, they reduced their holdings of the Peabody Gazette-Bulletin, which they sold in 1997 due to Bill’s failing health.

Shirley and Bill were a complementary team in all endeavors and they could dance with the best of them doing the Jitterbug, Charleston etc. Shirley was a loving mother of two daughters, providing the family with a happy home and a solid education. She was an avid bridge player and a very active Peabody socialite. She was a good person, kind, caring, generous, beautiful inside and out, and always so fashionable. Remarkably elegant and refined, she excelled in social graces and had exceptional style. She made the world a better place for everyone who knew her.

Shirley was predeceased 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 his nephew, Richard A. George.

Survivors include her two daughters, Koni Foster of Franklin, North Carolina, and Denise Krause, of Ashland, Oregon; five grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; and his niece Sharyn (Huckins) Baybayan of Chester, Nebraska.

The memorial service was held at Peabody United Methodist Church on Tuesday, April 19, 2022, with interment at Chester City Cemetery in Chester, Nebraska. 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.

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