Kenneth Schmidt Christensen (1921 - 2011)

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Kenneth S. Christensen with his wife, Rosa

Funeral services for Kenneth S. Christensen, 90, were conducted by Pastor Bradley Ketcham on Monday, Oct. 3, 2011, at 2:00 p.m. at St John's Lutheran Church in Audubon. Interment was in the Ebenezer Lutheran Cemetery west of Audubon. The casket bearers were Ronald Nielsen, Paul Nielsen, Robert Nielsen, Dan Smith, Wayne Heuss, and Ron Jacobson. The Kessler Funeral Home in Audubon was in charge of the arrangements.
Kenneth Schmidt Christensen, the son of Alfred H. and Dagny Schmidt Christensen, was born May 2, 1921, at his parents' home in Pottawattamie County near Weston, and died Sept. 24, 2011, at the Mercy Hospital Medical Center in Des Moines, at the age of 90 years, 4 months, and 22 days.
Kenneth was baptized at a church near Weston. When he was still quite young the family moved to a farm west of Audubon, and he was confirmed at Ebenezer Lutheran Church. He attended rural school in Douglas Township, Audubon County. He then helped on the family farm. On Aug. 18, 1944, he was inducted into the United States Army. During his tour of duty he served as a mortar gunner and saw action in the Rhineland and Central Europe. He was honorably discharged on April 6, 1946, and returned to help operate the family farm.
On Aug. 13, 1950, he was united in marriage to Frances Ytzen in Coulter. One daughter, Kathy, was born to this union. They farmed west of Audubon. In 1957 Frances died.
On Aug. 2, 1959, Kenneth married Rosa Elsberry at St John's Lutheran Church in Audubon. They farmed west of Audubon for many years. Along with farming, Kenneth also was employed as a mechanic with Gordon Nelson for several years and later worked at Talbot-Carlson, Inc. for a short time. They sold the farm in 1975 and moved into their new home in Audubon. Kenneth was employed at the Friendship Home in Audubon where he worked in the maintenance department. During this time he also spent many hours doing woodworking. He retired in 1995 and dedicated his time to his woodworking. Kenneth and Rosa enjoyed traveling especially to Colorado and South Carolina to see Rosa's brothers and to Minnesota to see their granddaughters. Kenneth was well known for his woodworking skills and spent many hours developing all types of projects. Rosa died Feb. 15, 2010. Kenneth lived in his home until he moved to the Friendship Home in Audubon in April of 2010.
Kenneth had been a member of the Ebenezer Lutheran Church west of Audubon for many years then later became a member of St John's Lutheran Church in Audubon. He was an active member and served on the Church Boards.
Kenneth was preceded in death by his wives Frances Christensen and Rosa Christensen; his son-in-law Greg Leppert; his granddaughter Danielle Leppert; his parents; his sister Lydia and husband Leon Anderson; his brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law Elsie and husband Ross Pollock, Ethel Elsberry, Leonard and wife Hulda Elsberry, Gladys and husband R. Donald Aikman, Virgil and wife Selma Elsberry, Homer Elsberry, and Pearl and husband Raymond Alt.
Survivors include his daughter Kathy Leppert of Brooklyn Park, Minn.; his granddaughters Heather Leppert of Brooklyn Park and her fiancé Christian Doggett serving in Frankfurt, Germany and Melissa and husband Sean Niehoff of Fairfax, Va.; his sister-in-law Frances Elsberry of Greenville, S.C., many nieces, nephews, other relatives and many friends.

Published in AUDUBON COUNTY ADVOCATE JOURNAL from Oct. 7 to Oct. 14, 2011