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Karen Saxvik

1942 - 2015 Obituary Condolences
Karen Saxvik Obituary
Karen Saxvik

Karen Saxvik, age 73, of Sioux Falls, died Monday, December 21, 2015, surrounded by loved ones. Public visitation with the family present will be from 2 to 4 pm on Sunday, December 27, 2015, at Miller Funeral Home, 507 South Main Avenue. A funeral service will begin at 10:30 am on Monday, December 28, 2015, at First Lutheran Church.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the Sioux Falls Education Foundation or the First Lutheran Church Music Ministry.

Karen Evelyn Hess, daughter of George and Evelyn (Flower) Hess, was born April 21, 1942 in Omaha, NE, the youngest of three children. She graduated from Westside High in 1960 and went on to attend Luther College in Decorah, IA, where she majored in Elementary Education and Drama, graduating in 1964.

On June 6, 1964, she married Erik Saxvik in Omaha, NE. They raised two daughters, Beth and Sarah, while living in Grand Forks, ND, Brooklyn Park, MN, and finally Sioux Falls, SD. During many of those years, Karen stayed home to raise her daughters; she also devoted much of her time to teaching elementary students. Before her retirement in 2006, Karen taught first grade at Robert Frost Elementary in Sioux Falls for many years. She was an integral part of the Reading Recovery program, and she pioneered the ESL (English as a Second Language) program in Minneapolis in the early 1980's. She was a patient, kind, and fun teacher, the favorite of many students.

An accomplished dancer and actor, Karen also loved traveling—as long as it was by car, train, or foot—knitting, walking, photography, singing, and spending time with her five grandchildren.

Karen will be deeply missed by her daughters, Beth (Scott) Boyens, Sioux Falls, and Sarah (Roy Reichlin) Saxvik, Bellingham, WA; her grandchildren, Anna, Ethan, Emma, and Adam, Sioux Falls, and Betti, Bellingham, WA; and special friend, Toby Wellenstein, Sioux Falls. She is also survived by her sister, Elaine (Ed) Russell, Omaha, NE, and many nieces and nephews.

Her parents and brother, Ronald Hess, preceded her in death.


Published in The Argus Leader on Dec. 23, 2015
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