Obituary in The SUNDAY EXPRESS-NEWS, San Antonio (TX), January 27, 1991
UNIVERSAL CITY - Shirley (Powell Rawson) Bergquist helped with the Allied effort during World War II by working at an Army Air Force depot at her home town of Essedon, Australia.
She also enjoyed flying with the test pilots in prototype planes whenever there was a seat available. She took her own parachute.
She died Tuesday of natural causes in her home. [The cause was pancreatic cancer] She was 68.
She met her husband, Chief Master Sgt. Jesse Bergquist, an aircraft mechanic for the Army Air Force at the time, at the air depot in Essendon. They moved to the United States at the end of the war in 1945.
Born in 1922, Bergquist received her basic education in Essendon. She and her husband married there in 1943.
When the depot moved north, Bergquist did not go with her husband and instead went to work as a court reporter and secretary. She maintained her relationship with her husband through letters.
In 1945, Bergquist moved to the United States and reunited with her husband in San Antonio. The couple then moved to Preston, Idaho where they lived until the outbreak of the Korean War. When the war broke out, they moved to Honolulu (HI), staying there three years.
She then moved to Dover, Delaware, with her husband until 1959 [actually, 1960], when he was transferred to Randolph AFB.
Bergquist and her husband were active in several square dance organizations, including the Square and Round Dance Association, Tuesday Twirlers and the Flying Square Dance Club. She was also a member of the San Antonio Area Square Dance Association.
She was also an avid reader, music listener and art collector.
"She was on a par with everyone I know because of her inquiring mind," her husband said. "She was very strong-willed and compassionate."
"She wanted things done right," he added. "If she ever felt like she shunned someone, it just broke her heart."
Other survivors include two daughters, Kristine Svaglic of Kansas City, Mo., and Catherine Bergquist of San Antonio; two sons, USAF Col. Ronald Bergquist, who is stationed in Turkey, and David Bergquist of Houston; a brother, Ronald Rawson, and a sister, Adele Kempster, both of Melbourne, Australia; and four grandchildren.
Services will be 1 p.m. Monday at the Sunset Funeral Chapel. Burial will follow at Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery.