Shirley M. Haavisto


ISHPEMING, MI – Shirley M. Haavisto, age 85, longtime Ishpeming resident passed away Sunday March 12, 2017 in the comforting care of her family and the compassionate staff at the Marquette County Medical Care Facility where she had been a resident since 2014.

Shirley was born December 4, 1931 in Ishpeming the daughter of the late William and Mae (Holm) Solka. She began school speaking only Swedish and was a year younger than her classmates since there was no kindergarten. She spent summers on her Grandpa Holm’s farm in Ishpeming along with her brother, John, and sisters Helen & JoAnne, helping him grow and sell red and golden raspberries, eggs and other produce. She loved the farm and being with extended family. She later worked at St. Mary’s Hospital and Bell Memorial Hospital as a nurses aide. The job she loved the most however was being a wife and mom. She married George Haavisto on June 7, 1952, and they raised two children, John and Judy.

Shirley was a member of the Bethel Lutheran Church. She was an avid reader and enjoyed cooking and baking for her family, along with playing cards with friends, watching old movies, and fishing with George. Children and baby animals always made her face light up.

Survivors include a son John (Sandy) Haavisto and a daughter Judy (Daniel) Fountain both of Negaunee, 2 grandsons – Jesse (Andy) Haavisto of Ishpeming and Lance (Sarah) Haavisto of Duluth, MN, brother John Solka of Green Bay, WI, sister Joanne (Joe) L’Huillier of Marquette, along with several special nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband George Haavisto in 2010, a sister Helen Solka and a sister-in-law Melba Solka.

The family will greet relatives and friends from 11:00am – 12:00noon on Friday, March 17, 2017 at the Bethel Lutheran Church in Ishpeming. Funeral Services will follow at 12:00noon on Friday at the Bethel Lutheran Church with the Rev. Lauri O. Maki to officiate. Interment will take place at the Ishpeming Cemetery. A luncheon will follow the services in the church hall.

Memorials may be directed to the Bethel Lutheran Church, Memorial Fund in memory of Shirley.

Shirley may be gone from this earth, but her kind and gentle spirit will always be with us.

Shirley’s obituary may also be viewed at where relatives and friends may leave a note of remembrance.