Lois Christiansen

Final Resting Place

Wednesday, November 29, 2023
Pleasant View Cemetery
680 S. Central Ave.
Hartley, Iowa, United States

Memorial Service

11:00 am
Saturday, December 16, 2023
St. Paul's Lutheran Church
60 North Central Avenue
Hartley, Iowa, United States

Obituary of Lois Elvira Christiansen

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    Lois Elvira Christiansen, daughter of Fred and Veda Ionia (Walters) Winkelhaus, was born on her parent’s farm near Hartley, Iowa on March 6, 1925; her older sister, Ardis, was there to welcome her to the family. The girls grew up together on the farm, helping their mother around the house and doing chores for their dad as they were able. Their Christian faith was founded in the Methodist church in Hartley.

    Lois received her early education through the country school system in O’Brien county; graduating from Hartley High School with the class of 1942. While still in high school, she was able to attend Normal Classes to earn credits for teaching grade school. Following graduation, Lois furthered her education through classes offered by Iowa State Extension in Spencer, Iowa and completed the teaching course through Northwestern College in Orange City, Iowa. Consequently, she taught country school for many years in Center, Omega, and Lincoln townships, as well as Harrison #2 in Osceola county and the Melvin Community School in Melvin, Iowa. Lois truly enjoyed teaching young minds and, hopefully, shaping their future in a positive direction. She found it very gratifying to visit with her former students in later years.  

    On February 21, 1954, Lois was united in marriage to Donald Christiansen at the home of Lois’ father, Fred Winkelhaus, near Hartley. They began their life on a farm near May City where Lois and Donald would raise their two children, Jeannene (1959) and Wade (1961) and steward the land together. Lois taught school until their children were born, then turned her attention to caring for her family. They were members of St. John’s Lutheran Church in May City; Lois taught Sunday School, was active in LWML, and participated in other church activities.

    Following Donald’s death in 1978, Lois relocated to the town of Hartley, moving her membership to St. Paul’s Lutheran Church located there. Visiting with people and sharing experiences was a special part of Lois’ life. She had belonged to DeoDecum and, before her eyesight began to fail, had enjoyed playing Bridge with friends or getting wrapped up in a good book. Of course, all that could wait when it came to her three granddaughters and great-granddaughter, Parker (who lovingly referred to her great-grandmother as “Gigi”) … they were the light of her life.

    On Saturday, November 25, 2023, Lois joined loved ones who had gone before; she was 98 years of age. Preceding her were her husband, Donald; her son, Wade (2000); parents, Fred and Ionia Winkelhaus; her sister, Ardis (James) Barnes; parents-in-law, Martin and Bertha Christiansen; and sister-in-law, Viola (Harold) Harms.

    Keeping her memory close at heart are her daughter and husband, Jeannene (Ray) Ryan of Burlington, Kansas; granddaughters: Ashley (Annie) Baumgarn of Riverside, California, Emily (Mitchell) Van Erdewyk and daughter, Parker, of Lawrence, Kansas, and Kendall Ryan of Grand Rapids, Michigan; other relatives and friends.

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