HECTOR - Ray Christensen, age 89, of Hector, passed away Friday, Dec. 14, 2012, at the Golden Living Center in Olivia. Funeral Service will be Saturday, Dec. 22, at 10:30 a.m.. at Swedlanda Lutheran Church in Palmyra Township, rural Hector. Interment in the Church Cemetery.
Visitation will be Friday from 5-8 p.m. at the Hughes-Hantge Funeral Chapel in Hector, and will continue for one hour prior to the service at the church on Saturday.
Memorials are preferred to Renville County Hospice, Alzheimer's Association, Green Lake Lutheran Ministries, and LPGM (Lutheran Partners in Global Ministries)
Lester Raymond Christensen was born June 11, 1923 in Palmyra Township, Renville County, the son of Carl Alfred and Emma Louise (Johnson) Christensen. He was baptized on July 1, 1923, and confirmed on Oct. 9, 1938, at Swedlanda Lutheran Church. Ray started his education in the township one-room schoolhouse where there were two other boys named Lester, which is how he became known as Raymond. He attended Hector High School.
On March 20, 1948, Ray married Helen Jean Louise Anderson. This union was blessed with four children. They lived and farmed in Palmyra Township. Over the years, Ray raised turkeys, sheep, and chickens, as well as corn, soybeans, and wheat. The family moved to a new house in Hector on January 1, 1965, although Ray continued to farm until 1971 when he began his second career as a real estate broker. Helen Jean died in 1984. Ray married Eldonna (Zimmerman) Fredrickson on Nov. 26, 1989, and they made their home in Hector.
Ray was a life-long member of Swedlanda Lutheran Church,and was also a member at First Lutheran Church in Hector for a time. He was active in all facets of the church. He served as a Sunday School teacher and superintendent, on the Church Council, and sang in the Men's Chorus. He was a member of the Green Lake Bible Camp Board for many years. He served as a member of the Hector School Board, and was a member of the Hector Kiwanis Club for many years. Ray loved to sing, and instilled the gift of music in his children. He participated in Community Choir, and also enjoyed taking part in community plays. Ray received the distinction of Hector's Outstanding Citizen in 2005.
When he wasn't working, Ray was an avid golfer. He enjoyed traveling and the adventures that go along with being on the road. Ray enjoyed many summer days and nights with family and friends at Diamond Lake, and he reveled in talking to strangers who quickly became friends, telling stories, both of the short and long variety.
Ray became a resident at the Golden Living Center in Olivia on March 22, 2010, and entered eternal life there on Dec. 14, 2012, having reached the age of 89 years, 6 months, and 3 days. Blessed be his memory.
Ray is survived by his wife, Eldonna Christensen, of Hector; children: Judy Schlecht and her husband Mike of Jamestown, North Dakota, Neil Christensen and his wife, Debbie, of Hector, Amy Hollan and her husband, Curt, of Hector, and Naomi Staruch and her husband Steven of Minneapolis. Carrying on his legacy are his grandchildren: Lori, Corey (Jodi), Dana, Jason (Barb), Molly, and Darren (Eileen); 11 great-grandchildren; sister-in-law Eileen Christensen of Calgary, Alberta, Canada; Eldonna's children: Karyn Lamb and her husband, Brian, of Hector, Joann Fredrickson and her partner, Mike Stevens, of Bemidji, Mark Fredrickson and his wife, Lynne, of Watertown; Eldonna's grandchildren: Emily, Karl (Mary Jo), Clark, and Claire; nieces, nephews, other relatives, and many friends.
Ray was preceded in death by his parents, Emma and Carl Alfred Christensen, infant sister Violet, brothers: Lloyd, Charles, and Delmar, his wife Helen Jean, and by his granddaughter's husband Ryan.
Arrangements with Hughes-Hantge Funeral Chapel in Hector. Online Guest Book is available at www.hantge.com Please click on Obituaries / Guest Book.