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Gunnar Alksnis

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Gunnar Alksnis Obituary
July 1, 1931 - May 15, 2011

Gunnar Alksnis passed away Sunday, May 15, 2011, in Woodland. He was born July 1, 1931, to John Edward and Elza Alksnis in Riga, Latvia. The family came to the United States in 1949.

Gunnar received his bachelor of divinity degree in 1955. He was ordained at Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church in Russell County, Kan., in 1956, where he met and married in 1957, his wife of 54 years, Pauline. He then went on to receive a master of sacred theology in 1965 and his doctorate of philosophy from Kansas State University in 1970. In 1968 Gunnar began a career of more than 30 years teaching history and theology at Washburn University, Topeka. He was a very well respected and beloved professor at the university and in the community.

In 2000 Gunnar and Pauline moved to Woodland to be closer to their daughter, Maria and husband Michael Grimes and grandson, Nicholas Grimes.

While in California he enjoyed passing on to others his immense knowledge of Martin Luther and the Reformation through Bible study, sermons, and guest speaking in Lutheran churches in Davis and Woodland. Gunnar was known throughout his life as an historian, minister, college professor and author, but most of all as a beloved husband, father and grandfather.

Gunnar is survived by his wife, Pauline (Krug) Alksnis; daughter and son-in-law, Maria and Michael Grimes; grandson, Nicholas Grimes; and brother, Tally Alksnis. He was preceded in death by his parents; and son, John Albert Alksnis.

Published in Daily Democrat on May 29, 2011
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