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Shirley Wyoma Poston Thomas Messenger
December 29, 1925 ~ February 23, 2017
March 1, 2017
Shirley Wyoma Poston, 91, loving mother, grandmother and great grandmother passed away February 23 with her family at her side. A celebration of Shirley's life will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 4, at Reynolds Funeral Chapel, 2466 Addison Avenue East, Twin Falls, Idaho, with Chaplain John Martinez officiating.

A family inurnment will take place at a later date. Following the celebration a gathering will take place at the Rock Creek Restaurant, 200 Addison Avenue West, Twin Falls.

She was born on December 29, 1925, in Bonners Ferry to John and Alice Poston. She was the third daughter of eight children. Shirley and her siblings were raised and attended schools in northern Idaho, which had been the family home since 1903.

They grew up during the roaring 20s and the Great Depression. When World War II started, the older boys went off to war and the rest of the family moved to Tacoma, Washington, to work in the war effort, including the teenaged Shirley.

When the war ended, Shirley met Tommy Thomas, a navy petty officer stationed at the Bremerton Naval Yards. After a short courtship they were married in Tacoma on October 22, 1945. At this time, Tommy mustered out of the Navy and the newlyweds moved to Tommy's hometown, San Francisco, California. At this time, Shirley's family moved back to Bonners Ferry.

In San Francisco, Shirley and Tommy opened a small restaurant in a cardroom on Mission Street and started a family with the birth of their first son Stan on July 29, 1946. Shirley became homesick for her family in Idaho shortly after the baby came and they loaded up the Packard convertible and headed to Bonners Ferry.

They lived there until 1956, Tommy working in the mills and Shirley working at various jobs and perfecting her passion for sewing. In 1956, the local economy took a turn for the worse and they moved to Fortuna, California, in search of a better life.

Shirley went to work for the Bank of America and Tommy worked in the mills. Two more sons soon arrived, Steve, July 8, 1959, and Joe, February 26, 1964. They made many lifetime friends in Fortuna. They became active members of the VFW and Shirley joined Beta Sigma Phi.

They finished raising their family in Northern California and opened a lumber shipping business 1966, but by the late 70s the economy was slowing down. They bought a Western Auto store, and during the recession in 1980 they decided to sell the store and move to Twin Falls, Idaho, where their oldest son, Stan lived.

In Twin Falls they opened The Buffalo Café, which is a local favorite for breakfast to this day. Through the Buffalo and their own outgoing personalities they met new friends and became active in the community.

When they retired in 1988 Shirley joined The Top Hat Tappers, where she not only danced, but used her sewing skills to make uniforms. They also joined the Veterans Motor Club of America and the Model A Club. They drove the Model A everywhere, including old car gatherings and to Top Hat performances.

They also traveled all over the west in their Ford diesel pickup with the fifth wheel in tow, visiting old friends and making new ones everywhere they went.

In 1998, the love of her life, Tommy, passed away after 54 years of marriage. For the first time in her life, she lived alone. In 1999, she met another WWII Navy veteran, John Messenger. They were married November 6, 1999.

Shirley and John traveled the world together from Nome, Alaska, to Rome, Italy, and they spent winters in Yuma, Arizona, and summers in Twin Falls. Shirley joined the Red Hat Ladies Club and the Monthly Lunch Girls Club. Shirley and John made new friends wherever they went during the 15 years they were married.

John passed away in 2014. She joined the Mall Walkers, played cards with her friends, and met her partner of the past couple years, Vic Graybeal. She spent her time with her family and many good friends. She and Vic spent a lot of time together, they went to Shriner events, walked the mall, and enjoyed the others company. Shirley was healthy and drove herself around right up to the end.

Shirley was preceded in death by her parents, Alice and John Poston, four brothers and three sisters, and her two husbands, Tommy Thomas and John Messenger.

She is survived by her sons Stan (Carol), Steve, and Joe (Liz), 13 grandchildren, and 29 great-grandchildren, and her special friends Jean Ross, Barbara Moyle, Virginia Linnell, Laverna Rudolf, and Vic Graybeal.

She lived a very fulfilling, fun life and will be missed and remembered by her many friends and her family.

In lieu of flowers please donate to the Shriners Children's Hospital c/o Reynolds Funeral Chapel, P.O. Box 1142, Twin Falls, Idaho 83303.

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