Victor Alden Christopherson
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CHRISTOPHERSON, Victor Alden

May 12, 1923 - June 11, 2020

WWII combat veteran, loving husband for 67 years to Georgia Marie (nee Ostler), father of Bryan (Christine) of Tucson, Vicky Begue (George) of Columbus, OH, and John (Kathleen) of Reno, NV; grandfather and great-grandfather, and the best friend to many anyone ever had. Dad was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, descendant of pilgrims, pioneers, and explorers. His family owned the oldest landscaping business in the city, and to this day its works and majestic trees still define the grounds of the capital and other public areas in the city. Like so many others, Dad's family fell on hard times during the Great Depression. The family lost the business, and his father was forced to take the job of gardener at a large private estate. The only evidence of Dad's impoverished childhood noted by his kids was perhaps his fondness for footwear, lots of it. He relished the weekly tradition of shoe and boot polishing, and from time to time could be overheard softly chuckling to himself as he did so.

Dad served in the 20th Armored Division of the US Army from his deployment through the end of the war and into the early days of the Allied Occupation of Germany, before being recalled home along with many thousands of other GIs in anticipation of the invasion of Japan. While at sea, word came that the US had dropped a giant bomb on Japan, destroying an entire city. A few days later, as his ship approached New York harbor, the news came of Japan's surrender. One can only imagine the joy and depth of feeling Dad and his lovely young wife Georgia experienced upon their long-delayed reunion.

Dad and Mom moved to New York City after the war and, using the GI Bill, Dad entered Columbia University, where he earned his bachelors, masters, and doctorate. He served as assistant professor at Oklahoma State University for several years, as associate professor at the University of Connecticut for four years, and finally as a full professor and for many years as the chair of the Child and Family Relations department at the University of Arizona from 1958 until his retirement well over 30 years later. During his long tenure, he was greatly loved by generations of students, highly esteemed and respected by his colleagues, and was the recipient of numerous prestigious awards, including The President's Club Creative Teaching Award and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the College of Agriculture.

Dad had many interests outside of his professional life. He inherited his grandfather's love of creating beauty through landscaping. Every home dad ever owned had a signature landscape that he created. He enjoyed long road trips, camping and fishing. He played guitar, particularly flamenco. He was a very social person and had many close friends who appreciated his quick wit and sense of humor, easy going manner and his genuine warmth and considerate nature.

Dad is survived by his children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, his dear friend Dr. Wai-Fong Lee, and several old and dear friends. Dad was a kind and considerate man, wonderful teacher and guide. As we look back over our own lives, we know how very blessed we were to have had such wonderful loving parents. Dad had a long, vigorous, rich life--a life filled with loving relationships and great accomplishment. He lived his life to its fullest. What more can any of us ask. Even so, he will be sorely missed. Even so.

If you wish, send a donation in Dad's name to the Erick Christopherson Endowed Legacy Scholarship Fund (https://nvnursesfoundation.org/Donations/erick.php), or to Casa de la Luz Foundation, (https://casafoundation.org/donations/), or a check made out to: UAF/VChristophersonScholEndmt (memo: fund 40-11-6665) to: UA Foundation; P.O.Box 210109; Tucson, AZ; 85722-0109. Arrangements by EVERGREEN MORTUARY.






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Published in Arizona Daily Star on Jun. 21, 2020.
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Memories & Condolences
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5 entries
June 22, 2020
Vic was a special person to me. I followed him as Chair of Child Development and Family at UA. He brought me into the position and for years after that was my dear friend and colleague. I have only good thoughts and feelings about him. I will miss him but he will continue in my life.
Carl Ridley
Friend
June 22, 2020
I have been friends with Vic's daughter Vicky and her family, George, Alex and Laura for over 20 years and they are like our second family. I have many great memories of visits with both Vic and his wife Georgia. In recent years, after Georgia passed away, Vic would come to Ohio for holidays and over the summer. In 2012, I was getting married and Vic wanted to see me in my dress before he headed back to Arizona. Upon seeing me he said, "well if Andrew doesn't want to marry you, I will." Always the gentleman, Vic will be dearly missed by our family. Having a whiskey in your honor this evening.
Amanda, Andrew, Jeanette & Matthew Postle
Friend
June 21, 2020
I took a several child development courses from Dr. Christopherson after having graduated from the U of A 45 years ago. He was undoubtedly my favorite professor and I can still remember his wisdom, kindness and encouragement. What a special person he was and I feel fortunate to have met him.
I am very sorry for your loss. Crissy Ash
christine ash
Student
June 21, 2020
What a beautiful obituary. He was one of my favorite profs in grad school (I had just moved to Tucson from CT for the program) What an amazing life he lived! I"m so sorry for your loss.
Nancy Kumble Fenn
June 21, 2020
I am so very sorry for your loss. My wife was a colleague of Vic's for many years where she developed a deep respect and admiration for him. I also have fond memories of Vic and Georgia
Doug Wylie
Friend
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