Claudene Christian passed away when the H.M.S. Bounty she was a crewmember on, sank during Hurricane Sandy, leaving family and friends devastated. Claudene (Chops) was born in Anchorage, Alaska on Oct.18,1970 to Harry Rex and Claudene Christian. She grew up around the corner from her extended family, and was like a sister to her cousins, Gene and Mike Christian. She was a favorite at the fire stations where she often visited her father. She loved camping and fishing and learned to clean fish at a very early age. She stayed close with her friends from Willow Crest Grade School through West High School. She was in the Music Machine musical and gymnastics for several years. In high school she participated in pole vaulting, musicals, and was class president in her sophomore year. She was also Miss Teen Alaska in 1986 and Alaska National Teen in 1987. When she went off to college (USC), graduating with a degree in Communications, she really went into high gear-becoming a USC Song Girl, and starting her own doll company. She joined the sorority Gamma Phi Beta and was in the Rose Bowl Parade in 1989. One of her first jobs out of college was at Hollywood Park horse race track. She loved the horses and would visit all of them early in the morning before going to work.
Claudene was a superb singer and song writer. A favorite she wrote was "Hermosa Beach". She sang with Joe's Band in the South Bay area of California for several years. She was an entrepreneur, who started Collegiate Doll Company and was David to Mattel's Goliath. A gourmet cook who loved entertaining and cooking for friends and especially her parents, she also loved to travel with friends to Mexico, New Orleans, Key West, etc. Claudene packed more experiences into her life than most people ever will. Beautiful, petite, but with the biggest personality-she left an impression on everyone who ever met her. She was a dynamo and inspirational. She made life happen on her own terms.
She is survived by her parents Harry R. and Claudene Christian; grandmother Martella Saulsbury; brother Gerald Christian; aunts Patricia Saulsbury, Linda Barnett (Pat), Doris Hurn, Willie Jamieson, and Linda Dufford (Steve); uncles Donald Smith and Corbet Smith; her cousins Gene Christian, Mike Christian, Scott Dufford, Gidget Trainor, Todd Smith, Tracie Torres, Harlan Saulsbury, Scott Saulsbury, Elizabeth Saulsbury, Donna Saulsbury, Donald Smith Jr., Wyatt Vienup, Bryan Bredthauer, Bambi Talbot, Debbie Faulk, Harley Hurn, and Cory Smith.
There will be a memorial hockey game at 4:30 p.m., Fri. Nov. 9th, at the Subway Arena on 0'Malley Rd. and a Celebration of Life at the Anchor Pub and Club, 7:00 p.m., Nov.9th at 712 W. 4th Ave.,Anchorage, Alaska, and Nov 9th at 6:00 p.m. at Game Changers in Hermosa Beach, CA. Claudene's ashes will be spread at ten locations, including Key West and Hermosa Beach, CA.
Published in Alaska Dispatch News from Nov. 7 to Nov. 8, 2012