Shirley Ann (Wissinger) Ulrich

Aug. 11, 1928 – Jan. 3, 2019


Shirley Ann (Wissinger) Ulrich, 90, formerly of Altoona, passed away Thursday, Jan. 3, 2019, in San Diego, Calif., with her four children at her side.

She was born in Altoona, the youngest of 15 children of Walter Gardner and Bertha Mae (Reed) Wissinger.

Surviving are a daughter, Marci Brown (Thomas) of Charlotte, N.C.; three sons: Mark Ulrich (Lynette) of Mechanicsburg, Kevin Ulrich (Meg) of San Diego, Calif., and Stevin Ulrich of Poway, Calif.; 10 grandchildren: Jesse Barge, Chloe Ulrich, Michael Ulrich, Maley Ulrich, Pauly Ulrich, Alex Ulrich, Tyler Ulrich, Kate Ulrich, Georgi Ulrich and Kevin Ulrich Jr.; honorary grandchildren: Curtis and Kyle Stabile; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.

She was preceded in death by her husband of 43 years, Myron D. Ulrich, Col. USAF (ret.) in 1995; as well as her 14 older siblings.

Shirley always described a happy childhood growing up at the family home on Fifth Avenue. She was a 1946 graduate of Altoona High School and she worked a variety of jobs, including U.S. Army Procurement Services, switchboard operator at Bell Telephone and modeling in New York City. She married Myron Dallas “Dutch” Ulrich, also of Altoona, as he was beginning his U.S. Air Force fighter pilot career. Their journey took them to air bases all over the world with stops in Chaumont, France; Bitburg, Spang­dahlem, Hahn and Wies­baden, Germany; Las Vegas, Nev., and Wichita, Kan.

She was active in several organizations, including officers’ wives clubs, base social functions, charity fundraising events and volunteering in school classrooms. Immersing herself in the customs and cultures wherever she lived, she learned to speak French and German, making lifelong friends along the way. In 1967, she moved to San Diego, caring for her family while Dutch served a one-year tour of duty in Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War. After his return and final military rotation to Germany, she returned to San Diego permanently in 1973, providing a wonderful home for her family and making lasting memories for over 45 years.

Shirley was the most beautiful Mom, Aunt and Grandie. She was a shining light, wonderful life teacher and positive inspiration to all. She will be missed and deeply and unconditionally loved — to the moon and back — forever and always.

A service will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 2, 2019, at Clairemont Mortuary, 4266 Mount Abernathy Ave., San Diego, followed by a celebration of her life at the family home immediately afterward.

Interment will be at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery, San Diego, Calif.