Shirley M. Mihalakis

Shirley M. Mihalakis, age 83, of Dubuque, passed away at 10:52 a.m., on Thursday, April 22, 2021, at the University of Iowa Hospital in Iowa City.  To honor Shirley’s life, graveside committal services will be held at Mt. Olivet Cemetery on Tuesday, April 27, 2021, at 11:00 a.m., with Deacon John Stierman officiating.  Due to COVID-19 concerns, all who attend will be required to wear a face covering, and are asked to please maintain social distancing practices.  Behr Funeral Home, 1491 Main Street, is assisting the family.

Shirley was born on December 12, 1937, in Dubuque, daughter of William and Edna (Maas) Shaffer. She attended school in Dubuque and tended bar for a number of years at the Airport Inn.

Shirley married Phillip J. Mihalakis on July 3, 1965, in Galena, IL. He preceded her in death in May of 1992. Shirley and Phillip operated the Log Cabin Bar just across the toll bridge in Wisconsin. They also owned and operated the River City Tap in Dubuque until 1991. After Phillip’s death in 1992, Shirley began working in janitorial services at Sears in Dubuque, retiring in 2000.

In 1999, she began spending time with Pete Schwartz and his family, and they have been enjoying each others’ company for the last 22 years. Many of those years were spent on the water with a fishing pole in her hand pursuing her passion for fishing. When she and Pete were not on the water together, they enjoyed a good meal and a friendly game of cards with friends. Spending quality time with family and friends was one of Shirley’s great joys, and she will be missed by all who enjoyed her company.

Those left to cherish Shirley’s memory include

her long time friend and companion, Pete Schwartz and his family;

her brothers,
Clarence Shaffer,
James (Rose) Shaffer
and Harold (Sue) Shaffer, all of Dubuque, Iowa;

and all of her greatly loved nieces and nephews and great-nieces and great-nephews.

Shirley was preceded in death by her husband; and her siblings, Alice, Irvin, Donald, John “Jack”, Rita, Mary, Lorraine, Leonard, Richard “Dick” and William.

Thank you to Stephany Schwartz and Jenny Schwartz who lovingly cared for Shirley.

The family will thankfully receive your support through phone calls, greeting cards and memorials in Shirley’s memory which may be mailed to Behr Funeral Home, 1491 Main Street, Dubuque, Iowa 52001, Attn. Shirley Mihalakis Family.

Online condolences may be left for the family at

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