Shirley Lee Freberg Welch, Age :96

Dec 21,1923---Jul 20,2020

Shirley Lee Freberg Welch 96, resident of Albuquerque for 73 years, passed peacefully at her home July 20, 2020.  She was born December 21, 1923 in Long Beach, California.  In her youth she lived in Venezuela, Kansas City, Borger Texas and Chicago. 

Preceded in death by son Don Freberg, husband Ken Freberg Sr. and second husband Graydon Welch.  Survived by daughter Glenda Freberg of Berkeley, California, son Ken Freberg and his wife and Shirley’s companion Karen of Albuquerque, sister Ann Williams, niece Christy Nibbelink and family, nephew Steve Williams and family all of California. 

As a young woman in Chicago, she lived at the YWCA, worked as a secretary in the war effort and danced to the ‘Big Bands’ at the Aragon Ballroom.  The experience carried over to a lifetime love of dancing.  Moving to Albuquerque in 1947, she met and married UNM student Ken Freberg.  They were married 37 years.  As a couple, they were known for their parties with a wide circle of friends.  While raising three children, she worked part-time as a hostess for the 7up Bottling Company.  When the children were older, Shirley worked as the school secretary in the principal’s office at Kennedy Middle School and Tomasita Elementary School.  She retired from APS.  Later, as a widow, she found love a second time, for 22 years, marrying Graydon Welch.  They worked at enjoying life, dancing and traveling extensively.  Widowed a second time, she lived independently.  She particularly relished traveling with her children and partaking in ‘Happy Hour’ gatherings.  Shirley loved to shop and found many treasures at garage and estate sales.  She was a very stylish woman who delighted in dressing up.  She was an avid card player and enjoyed many good times with friends at the Meadow Lark Senior Center in Rio Rancho.  The family would like to acknowledge and thank the staff, caregivers and friends at Woodmark Assisted Living.  Our eternal thanks go to Armada Hospice especially caregiver Korina.  Shirley enjoyed life to the end.  She will be missed by her friends of all ages.  Rest well.  You will not be forgotten.  Arrangements being handled by Riverside Funeral Home.  A celebration of life will be planned in the future.


Arrangements entrusted to:

Riverside Funeral Home

225 San Mateo Blvd. NE

(505) 764-9663


Julie Walker Jul 28 ,2020

Nephew's wife ,Columbus ,Georgia

My thoughts and prayers are with you -- Glenda, and Kenny and Karen. Cherish your memories. I have wonderful memories of your mother and the times we shared together. Love to all of you!