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Official Obituary of

Sharon Lee Stager

January 22, 1937 ~ March 18, 2024 (age 87) 87 Years Old

Sharon Stager Obituary

Sharon Lee Stager, 87, of Clara City, died Monday, March 18th at Copperleaf Senior Living in Willmar. Her memorial service will be at 11:00 am, Saturday, April 27th at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Clara City. Visitation will be one hour prior to her service. Arrangements are with West Central Cremation Service in Willmar. 

Sharon Lee Peterson was born on January 22, 1937, in Salina, Kansas, the first child of Edwin “Pete” and Delma (Walker) Peterson.  In her younger years, her father worked at various jobs to support his family, so they traveled around Kansas to follow the work, which was common during and after WWII.  Sharon shared many stories with her family of growing up during the war, about how everyone was poor but didn’t know it, families often lived together, and necessities were strictly rationed to support the war effort.  She told of her father recruiting young men from the nearby German POW camp to help farm their land, and how the prisoners would always volunteer to work for him because they were treated well and because her mother was such a good cook, and the men always went back to their camp at the end of the day with full stomachs.  Her favorite memories were of her early years on the farm, where she went barefoot most of the time, had lots of cousins nearby, made pets of all of the farm animals, and rode her own Shetland pony to and from the country school two miles away.  She was the first and only girl to play on the boy’s baseball team, and was also a high school cheerleader, acted in dramatics, and was the editor of her high school newspaper.  After graduating as Valedictorian of Brookville Rural High School in 1955, Sharon attended Brown Mackie School of Business in Salina, KS, intending to get a business degree, but left after receiving her secretarial degree because she had been swept off of her feet by a handsome airman named Henry Stager, Jr., who was stationed at Smokey Hill Air Base near Salina.  After a 5-month whirlwind romance, they were married on April 17, 1956, and shortly afterward, they moved to his hometown of Clara City, MN, aka, the frozen tundra.  To this union, 5 children were born.  Sharon worked as a postal clerk in Clara City for many years, eventually fulfilling her dream of becoming a Postmaster.  She also worked as secretary to the principal at Clara City High School for a number of years, the job she personally enjoyed the most, and also worked with her husband Henry, filling gas tanks, checking oil, washing windshields, and taking care of the books for their business, Stager’s Service, until the time of Henry’s retirement.  Sharon was the Maynard Postmaster when she retired in 1996.  She served on the council for St. Clara’s Parochial School and for St. Clara’s Catholic Church, and was one of the first women to join the Clara City Lions Club.  She played a mean game of cards, and frequently won the grand prize at her card club.  She also enjoyed reading, solving crossword puzzles, dancing, traveling, and spending time with their friends in Clara City and Texas, playing golf, cards and dominoes.  She was a faithful and devoted wife and mother, taking exceptional care of Henry during his numerous bouts with cancer.  She accompanied Henry on many long distance hunting and fishing trips at his request, even though she didn’t really enjoy it.  Being a warm-weather-loving Kansas girl, she most enjoyed the winters she and Henry spent at their Stuart Place home in Harlingen, TX.  She was an inspiration to her family, the most organized person they knew, and instilled in them all the same hard work ethic she learned growing up on the farm.  Henry and Sharon were married for 50 years until his death in 2006, and she mourned him until the day she died. 

Sharon passed away on March 18, surrounded by her children, at Serenity Suites, Vista Prairie at Copperleaf, from complications of Alzheimer’s Disease.

Sharon is survived by four children: Cynthia (and Gary) Meyer of Clara City; Pamela (and John) Wright of Cape Coral, FL; Jamie Reiter of Redwood Falls, MN; Jeffrey (and Cari) Stager of Clara City; her daughter-in-law Karla Stager of Eden Prairie, MN; her brother Gary (and Kathy) Peterson of Reno, NV; 13 grandchildren, 17 great-grandchildren, 2 nieces and their families, and numerous other cousins, in-laws, and friends. 

Sharon was preceded in death by her parents, her husband Henry, her son, Leslie, her granddaughter, Keli Jo Stager, and her great-grandsons: Brayden Wozney and August Meyer.  Blessed be her memory.

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