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Obituary of Shirley Freschi
Everyone who met Shirley (McLean) Freschi would recall her beautiful smile, her fine sense of fashion, and her willingness to start a conversation. Shirley always held a great enthusiasm for life. She enjoyed having fun with family and friends, being with her many dogs and horses, whom she dearly loved, as well as traveling the world.
Shirley’s long and exciting life began in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada and often praised the merits of her native country. She was very proud of her Scottish-Canadian heritage. Her father, G.W. Mclean, had sailed from Scotland to Canada on his own when he was just seventeen. There he met and married Lily Cross, a young woman who had immigrated from Shropshire, in the south of England.
Shirley had fond memories growing up in Canada with her parents and her three older siblings and loved to tell stories of riding horses in the summertime at a friend’s farm out in the country. She especially enjoyed family gatherings at their cabin on the beautiful Pigeon Lake, which had been in their family for three generations.
A sense of adventure inspired Shirley to move to California to pursue her college education. At the University of Southern California, she fell in love with her future husband Ray. They married and settled in La Canada Flintridge, where they enjoyed raising their two children, Susan, and Ray Jr. (“ Sandy”). Unfortunately, the family had to endure the loss of Susan, who tragically passed away in her youth.
Having a strong moral compass, Shirley became active supporting civil rights with the local democratic party in the 1960’s and became a child protection social worker. In her lifetime, she became an ardent supporter of the Humane Society and various horse rescue sanctuaries, as well as organizations such as the Sierra Club and UNICEF.
Shirley was fortunate to enjoy many exciting travels with her husband Ray, visiting relatives in Canada, Scotland, and England. One of her most memorable trips was driving across Africa with her brother, Roland. At home, Shirley was known to be a wonderful cook and loved to host dinner parties. She also regularly attended the San Francisco Ballet. Throughout the years, she loved having visits from her son, Sandy, his wife Janis, and her grandchildren, Peter, and Brooke.
Shirley and Ray relished the Monterey coast for its weather and beauty, spending their later years residing in Pebble Beach. The couple enjoyed many years riding horses on lovely forest trails, dancing with the local PDQ group, exercising at the Beach Club and entertaining friends and family. Shirley and Ray then appreciated their ten years together at the Carmel Valley Manor. After her beloved husband of 65 years passed away, Shirley carried on in her final years at the Manor, until she passed away at age 95.
Shirley will be missed for her kindness, for being a wonderful mother, her life-long grace, and her passionate love for animals.
Donations in lieu of flowers can be made in honor of Shirley to the SPCA or your local Humane Society.To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Shirley Freschi, please visit Tribute Store
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