Cover photo for Shirley Spittles's Obituary
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1939 Shirley 2022

Shirley Spittles

June 18, 1939 — June 17, 2022

Shirley (Ann) Spittles, 82, of Council Grove, KS went to be with the Lord on June 17, 2022, just 1 day short of her 83rd birthday.

Shirley was born on June 18, 1939, in Morris County to Glen and Dymple (Vermillion) Barber of Alta Vista. Shirley grew up on a farm just south of town and attended Garfield School, a one-room schoolhouse, till 8th grade. She rode her horse to school every day. 

Shirley graduated from Alta Vista High School in 1957 and went on to marry her high school sweetheart, Clarence Dean Spittles on July 7, 1957. They lived northeast of Alta Vista for many years before moving to their farm near Council Grove in 1988. Dean built many houses in Manhattan but was always a farmer/rancher at heart. Shirley had an upholstery business in Alta Vista until she went to work for the Area Agency on Aging in Manhattan, where she was the Director of Field Services for the North Central Flint area from 1980 until her retirement in 2001.

Dean and Shirley were married 53 wonderful years before Dean passed on September 5, 2010. They always had a team of horses that they drove on the Heart of the Flint Hills Santa Fe Trail Ride each year as well as in many local parades. They both had a passion for square dancing and were members of the Camping Squares of Kansas club, where they enjoyed camping and square dancing with their many friends. They were also active members of the Pleasant Ridge Christian Church where Shirley led the singing for many years.  

Shirley had a lifelong passion for music. She sang with her high school friends Marilyn Ziegenhirt and Jean and Kay Cashman for church and other events in high school. Shirley continued singing as long as she could in church, church choirs and with her family. The Spittles family band performed at churches and many community events where she sang and played the mandolin. Dean and Shirley also sang together for many other events throughout the years. 

She always had a positive outlook on life and a smile for everyone she met. She loved unconditionally and was always willing to help a stranger in any way she could. Her distinctive laugh could be heard anytime she was in the room. 

She loved attending sporting events and watching her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren perform and compete. She even attended the bachelorette party for her granddaughter, Desiree’, in Aggieville! Several of the college students asked her to dance but she declined. Black Friday was a big family affair and she never missed any until this past December. She enjoyed spending time with her family first and foremost. 

Following her retirement from the Area Agency on Aging she found her passion running a business with her daughter, Vonda, in Junction City and later in Manhattan called Shabby to Sheik.

Up until a few years ago she also worked at White Memorial Camp and served on their board.

Preceding her in death were her brother Donald Barber of Council Grove, sister-in-law Yvonne (Spittles) Burton of Gladstone, Missouri and son Rodney Dean Spittles of Emporia.

Surviving children are: daughter Sheila (Spittles) Litke and husband Byron, Council Grove, daughter-in-law Joy (Hoag) Spittles, Nowata, Oklahoma, son Rocky Spittles and wife Deborah, Alta Vista, daughter Vonda Kay (Spittles) Shane and husband Mike, Alta Vista. 

Surviving grandchildren are: Shilo (Litke) King and husband Tim, Council Grove, Lacie Jo (Litke) Kasten and husband Kerry, Council Grove, Dustin Spittles and wife Emily, Council Grove, Janet Cherie (Spittles) Washam and husband Harry, Bartlesville, Oklahoma, Amber (Sawyer) Linhardt and husband Zach, Manhattan, Jasmine Spittles, Lawrence, Desiree’ (Litke) Yadon and husband Tyler, Council Grove, Nathan Shane and wife Nicole, Otoe, Nebraska, Talon Spittles, Kansas City, Toni (Moreland) Murphy and husband Andy, Bartlesville, Oklahoma, Autumn Spittles, Phoenix, Arizona.

Surviving great grandchildren are: Treyser King, Brodey King, Daleyna King, Brittley King, Cutler Dean Kasten, Kinsley Jo Kasten, Paislee Yadon, Cyler Dean Yadon, Christian Dean Washam, Daisy Washam, Gavin Spittles, Elana Spittles, Kyzer Spittles, Avery Sawyer, Bailey Linhardt, Ethan Linhardt, Shilee Metzger, Olivia Latta, Hudson Latta, Wyatt Dean Shane, Marshal Shane.

Visitation will be held on Thursday, June 23rd from 5:00-7:00pm, at the Sawyer Funeral Chapel in Council Grove, Kansas. Graveside services will be held Friday, June 24th at 10:00am, at the Moss Springs Cemetery in Alta Vista, Kansas. The family would like to invite everyone to attend a celebration of life at the McDowell Creek Community Center, 12510 Lower McDowell Rd, Manhattan, KS 66502, immediately following the graveside service on Friday. Memorial contributions may be made to White Memorial Camp.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Shirley Spittles, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Thursday, June 23, 2022

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

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Graveside Service

Friday, June 24, 2022

Starts at 10:00 am (Central time)

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