Obituary: Lorraine Washburn


Lorraine Washburn, 93, of Rock Island, passed away at The Ivy at Davenport nursing home on Nov. 10, 2020, with Cunnick-Collins handling arrangements. There was a private gravesite service for family at Summit Cemetery led by Pastor Pat Halverson. Memorials may be made to King’s Harvest Animal Shelter, Davenport, or Quad City Animal Welfare Center, Milan, Ill. 

Lorraine Francis Sharrett was born in rural Scott County in Lincoln Township, Oct. 18, 1927, to Ralph and Dorothy (Drenter) Sharrett in the front parlor of the farmhouse of her grandparents, delivered by nurse, Grace VanEvera. Lorraine attended a one-room schoolhouse named Criswell No. 5. Later Lorraine attended and graduated from Davenport High School in 1946.  Lorraine worked for M. L. Parker Company, selling hosiery after she graduated from high school for one year. She worked for Younkers for two years when North Park first opened in the jewelry department.

Lorraine married Ralph Kuehl in November 1946 in Davenport. She later married James Dean Washburn in December of 1976 in Rock Island. 

Lorraine and Ralph lived on Sturdevant Street in Davenport. She was a homemaker and Ralph was a bricklayer. Lorraine was a Camp Fire Girls Leader for her daughter Suzy and her friends. Lorraine was an accomplished cook and had dinner on the table at 5:30 when Ralph and the girls would share dinner every night. As the girls got older, Ralph and Lorraine would go out for dinner on Saturday night with friends. Then they would head over to the Col Ballroom to dance to the live bands performing that evening.  Sundays were spent going to church in the morning and then going over to visit Lorraine’s mother, Dorothy, who always baked a pie or cinnamon rolls for when they stopped by after church with the family. Then sometimes they would take a ride in afternoon to various places with the whole family and her mother. Sometimes they would pack a picnic lunch to have at a park near their destination that Sunday afternoon.

Dean and Lorraine had an appliance store business in downtown Moline on 4th Avenue. Lorraine would greet customers and answer the phone. She was one of the first women in the Quad City area to demonstrate how to use the microwave oven when they first were introduced in the late '70s. 

Back in late 1970s, Dean and Lorraine were avid motorcycle enthusiasts and traveled throughout the Midwest such as the Ozarks in Missouri.

In the late 1970s and 1980s, Lorraine and Dean traveled on various organized excursion trips. They went numerous times to Europe, three Caribbean cruises, multiple times to Hawaii and many times to Acapulco, Mexico, and also Jamaica. Back in the '80s they drove through the United States on a six-week trip up and down the coast of California.

Lorraine’s interests included cooking, needlework, reading, traveling and crossword puzzles. She also enjoyed jazz music and listening to bands at Sunday morning brunches. One of her favorite singers was Michael Buble. She also loved listening to the jazz trumpet of Wynton Marsalis. She was a lifetime member of the Scott County Historical Society. She loved animals, and she and Dean always had a German schnauzer dog in their lives, which they fondly called each one Fritz.

Lorraine also enjoyed a nice glass of wine occasionally. She asked all her friends and family to raise their glass of wine and make a toast in her memory.    

Lorraine loved her family and leaves behind her daughters, Suzanne VenHorst, Bettendorf, Linda Enders, Eldridge, and Janice Kuehl and her friend, Larry McHenry, Davenport. Grandchildren, Amy VenHorst and her friend, Nick Smith, Matthew (Jennifer) VenHorst, Jacob VenHorst, all of Eldridge, and Kate (Justin) Trine of LeClaire. She had three great grandchildren, Saeler and Lakyn VenHorst and Cameron Trine, and a special friend, Ernie Endert. 

Lorraine is preceded in death by her husband, parents, sister, Eileen Carter, brother, Kenneth Sharrett and son-in-laws, Robert (Bob) VenHorst and Dr. Wilfred (Willy) Enders.


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