Donna Jean Christen, 95 years of age, of Minot, North Dakota, passed away on Saturday, September 26, 2020 in a Williston Nursing Home.
She was born Donna Jean Jensen on June 16, 1925 in Minot, North Dakota, to Ellsworth and Margaret (Galvin) Jensen. As the daughter of educators, she and her younger brother, Tom, moved to several rural areas in their early years. She began her education in Crosby, North Dakota and later in the Mountrail County area.
While in grade school, she and her family spent many summers traveling and working in the fruit orchards on the West Coast.
In the 9th grade, she moved to Minot to live with her grandmother in order to attend St. Leo’s High School. She had fond memories of days at the movie theater and following the school basketball games
She graduated as class Valedictorian in 1941 at the age of 15.
Donna attended Minot State Teacher’s College that fall, graduating in 1943 with a teaching degree. She taught elementary school for four years in Devils Lake, North Dakota.
Donna wrote letters supporting North Dakota servicemen fighting in World War II, one soldier later becoming her husband. She married DuWayne (Dewey) Christen of Plaza on May 31, 1947.
Together they had 10 children— Kathy Connie Thomas Richard William Mary Daniel David John Laurie
and raised their family in Minot, ND. Donna treasured her time as a stay home mom and loved supporting her children.
She was a longtime Minnesota Twins fan.
She attended every ND State Wrestling Tournament for over thirty years.
She was a lifelong member of St. Leo’s Catholic Church where she had been baptized and married, A member of the Catholic Daughters of America since age 16, Attended Bible study regularly, A lector for Mass, And served many funeral meals for her parish. She brought library books to the homebound, Delivered Meals on Wheels, Volunteered at Trinity Nursing Home.
Donna was an avid reader and enjoyed sewing.
Donna and Dewey liked to play bridge and dance.
During her retirement years she enjoyed traveling and continued to put her heart and soul into supporting her family.
She was stubborn. She was funny. She was loved immensely.
She and her family spent many summers traveling and working in the fruit orchards on the West Coast.
I am eating plums with beer. Tonight, no stars just a void that resembles a freshly erased chalkboard Darker, quieter than most.
There’s a puzzle scattered on the kitchen table. It’s image is cookies and yesterday I spilled sugar on it.
Sometimes there are spiders on my head, sometimes down my shirt. It’s forever a surprise.
I rate the bugs: Spiders — 8, useful and skilled Moths — 7, harmless House flies — 2, useless, constant annoyance Horse flies — 1, useless, annoying, painful Mosquitos — 0, the worst of all Ants — 4, not too bad Beetles — 5, stick to themselves, usually discrete Ticks — 0, up to no good