Esther H. Christensen, 84, of Cedar Rapids, IA, passed away in the early morning of Tuesday, April 27, 2021. Visitation will be from 4:00 to 7:00 PM on Wednesday, May 5, 2021 at the Cedar Memorial Park Funeral Home. A graveside service will be held at 1:00 PM on Thursday, May 6, 2021 at Humboldt Union Cemetery, Humboldt, Iowa.
“Following the continued guidance from health officials, physical distancing must be practiced which requires a limited number of people allowed into the visitation at one time. The use of facemasks or shields is required.”
Esther Helen Ray was born on July 19, 1936, the first-born child of Elmer O. and Helen D.
(Stephenson) Ray. Upon high school graduation, she moved from the family farm to Ames, Iowa, where Esther took a job where she lived and worked with a group of young women her age who became lifelong friends. During this time in Ames, she met a young engineering student named Charles Christensen. Their steady faith in each other grew quite quickly. So, when that young man endured a late Iowa snowstorm in his drive from his new job in Indiana to Esther’s parents place in Webster County, Iowa, to place a ring on her finger, the only surprise is that he did not wait out the coming storm in Des Moines before turning north and heading into it. Charles and Esther were married on June 16, 1956 at Fort Belvoir, Virginia.
Esther spent about 20 years as a stay-at-home mom before returning to school to obtain her accounting degree from Kirkwood Community College. Thereafter becoming a working wife and mother. She was a dedicated member of First Congregational United Church of Christ, serving on committees and women's groups, attending bible study and prayer groups, singing in the choir, and playing hand bells. Esther was a proud member of the PEO. Esther with her husband Charles, were yearly season ticket holders at the Cedar Rapids Symphony. They spent several years helping to establish and support the local chapter of the Antique Automobile Club of America.
Esther is survived by her three children, Thomas (Jan) Christensen of Bethlehem, PA; Carl Christensen of Cedar Rapids, IA; and a daughter, Anne Christensen of Marion, IA; two grandchildren, William Christensen, and Jana Christensen; two sisters, Lola Hayes of Mount Pleasant, IA; Doris Peterson of Harcourt, IA; and many loving nieces, nephews, and extended family members.
She was preceded in death by her parents, and husband, Charles W. Christensen.