Shirley Ruth Green


Shirley Ruth Green, 91, a loving and devoted wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, teacher and follower of Jesus Christ died peacefully in the early morning hours of May 2, 2021 at Hays Medical Center.

Shirley was born Feb. 12, 1930 in Great Bend, KS, to Clarence and Anna (Geil) Seeber.  A fourth generation Kansan, Shirley spent the early years of her life near Great Bend on the Seeber family farm homesteaded by her great-grandfather, a Civil War veteran.  She graduated from El Dorado High School in 1947 as class Salutatorian. She met her future husband, Joseph (Dick) Green at Wichita University (now Wichita State).  Dick and Shirley married June 4, 1948.  They moved to Hays in 1952, where they raised six children.  

Shirley resumed her college education at Fort Hays State College in 1962 after the birth of her last child. Within four years, she graduated Summa Cum Laude with two Bachelor degrees and a Master’s of Science Degree.  Shirley began her teaching career as a science instructor at Fort Hays State in 1967.  Most of Shirley’s career teaching science was at Hays High School and Hays Junior High School.  The added income from teaching made it possible for all six children to go to college.   

After 13 years of teaching science, she left teaching to help Dick with his business, Green Oil Operations. She was elected to the board of Unified School District 489 in 1980 and served for several terms. She continued her life of service to others as a board member at First Call for Help for 20 years. She delivered Meals on Wheels for years and prepared and served meals at church funeral dinners until she was 90 years old. Shirley and Dick provided a home for many foster children and served on mission trips at home and abroad, building homes for people who had none. In 2016, she was honored for 57 years of service at First United Method Church in Hays. As a mother, a teacher, a community leader, and a passionate disciple of Christ, Shirley touched thousands of lives.

Beginning in the late 1970s, Shirley and Dick traveled widely in Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Central, and South America as well as across the United States especially in the West. They loved our national parks.  Shirley and Dick went on several Elder Hostel trips, always taking opportunities even when retired to keep learning and growing.  The sciences and the natural world were subjects of lifelong fascination for them both. Shirley and Dick were chosen to be among the first group of American geologists and scientists permitted to enter China in 1981.  The two were married for 63 years.  Their door was always open to their kids' friends, for a meal, a place to stay, or just to hang out.

Shirley was preceded in death by an infant, Karen; her husband, Dick; her son, Craig; her parents, her brothers Harlan Seeber and Glenn Seeber; and numerous in-laws. Survivors include her brother Dean (Susan) Seeber of Wichita, her sons Richard (Pam) of California, MO; Larry (Patsy) of New Hope, MN; Jerry (Susan) of Hays; Robert (Melissa) of Bethesda, MD; daughter-in-law Tina (Craig) of Livingston, TN; and daughter Krista (Len) Mize of Arvada, CO. Shirley had 14 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren with one on the way. Shirley Green was one of a kind and will be forever missed by her family, friends and all who knew her.

A celebration of life will be at 10:00 am on Thursday, May 6, 2021 at the Hays First United Methodist Church with Rev. Mike Rose officiating.  Private family inurnment will follow in Mt. Allen Cemetery.

The family will receive friends from 9:00 am until service time on Thursday at the church. 

In lieu of flowers, the family recommends donations to the Hays Community Assistance Center and First Call for Help, in care of Hays Memorial Chapel Funeral Home. 

Condolences and memories of Shirley may be shared with the family at

Published on May 03, 2021