Cover photo for Sharyl Ann Flora's Obituary
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Sharyl Ann Flora

September 1, 1944 — March 21, 2022

Sharyl Ann Hughes Flora was born Sept. 1, 1944, in Lewellen, Nebraska, to Russell Dewitt and Mary Jo Hughes. She started school in Ogallala, Nebraska, where her father was the agricultural county agent for Keith, Arthur, and Grant counties. In 1951, the family moved to Fremont, Nebraska, where her father became county agent for Dodge County.

In 1962, Sharyl graduated with honors from Fremont High School. She attended Midland Lutheran College (now Midland University) after graduation. Her membership in the Midland A Cappella Choir led her to catch the eye of Jairus (Jerry) Dale Flora Jr., who noticed the “pretty blonde” in the soprano section. On a European tour with the choir in 1963, Sharyl and Jerry were able to have their first date in Paris. They returned from Europe a steady couple and transitioned to a long-distance courtship as Jerry’s postgraduate studies would take him to Germany for a year. A short trip back to pop the question with a ring bought in Amsterdam, and then Jerry was off to Tallahassee, Florida, to continue his studies. During the year Jerry was in Florida, Sharyl taught mathematics in middle school in Blair, Nebraska. They were married at the First United Methodist Church in Fremont, Nebraska, on Aug. 18, 1967. Sharyl then joined Jerry, living in married student housing at Florida State University in Tallahassee. After half a year, she got a job teaching mathematics at Elizabeth Cobb Middle School in Tallahassee, and they purchased a small house, where they lived for two years as Jerry finished his Ph.D.

Jerry’s professorship at the University of Michigan would move the couple to Ann Arbor, where they welcomed their only child, Edward Hughes Flora, in 1976. With Ed’s arrival, Sharyl turned her attention to being a stay-at-home mom. When Ed was enrolled in the First United Methodist Church preschool, Sharyl volunteered to assist. She continued assisting as Ed progressed through school.  When Jerry took a sabbatical semester to write research papers, she took computing courses and published programs that assisted burn surgeons in the National Institute for Burn Medicine in evaluating the severities of injuries of burned persons.

In 1984, the family moved to Overland Park, Kansas. Sharyl would support a school-age Ed in his various projects and Boy Scout work, as well as being his No. 1 fan at choir concerts and swim meets. She also volunteered at school teaching math and served on various church committees.

Sharyl had a good mind for logic and puzzle games and would pass the cold Kansas winters working jigsaw puzzles. The basket by her chair was filled with the crochet, cross-stitch and embroidery pieces that she enjoyed working on and giving as presents to her loved ones.

Sharyl passed away at home on March 21, 2022, and is survived by her husband, Jerry Flora, their son, Edward, and their daughter-in-law, Janelle Spangler Flora.

Sharyl requested there be no service and that she be cremated and her ashes scattered at Ash Hollow, near Lewellen, where she was born.

(In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Masonic-Eastern Star Home for Children in Fremont, Nebraska ( https://www.meshc.org/ ), Kansas City Hospice ( https://www.kchospice.org/ ), or a charity of your choice.)

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