In Memoriam: Shirley Burgoyne

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In Memoriam: Shirley Burgoyne

Retired attorney Shirley Burgoyne, a lifetime member of the Washtenaw County Bar Association, died Dec. 8, at the age of 87.

The Saginaw native received her AB from University of Michigan's School of Literature Science and Arts, and graduated from the University of Michigan Law School in 1956 with a Juris Doctor. She was among the first group of women to enter the Michigan Union via the front door in 1956.

Burgoyne was very involved with, and even instrumental in extending, women’s rights as well as parental rights for same-sex parents, arguing and winning a landmark case on the subject before the Michigan Supreme Court. She also championed the rights of the incarcerated later in her career.

Burgoyne practiced law in Ann Arbor, although she spent considerable time in Muskegon County, practicing law and serving as treasurer for the White River Beach Association on Lake Michigan.

In addition to more than 60 years as an attorney, her other passion was music. She played in the orchestra for the First Presbyterian Church in Ann Arbor (where she was an active member) as well as for the Burns Park Players; and wrote a few plays and musicals.

Burgoyne is survived by sons David (Cyntha) and Douglas as well as her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Burgoyne was privately buried in Montague, but a memorial service is scheduled at 1 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 24, 2020 the First Presbyterian Church of Ann Arbor, 1432 Washtenaw Ave., with a short reception to follow.