Arlene Christensen, age 96, of Sleepy Eye, formerly of rural Morgan, passed away from cancer on January 6, 2021, at Countryside Assisted Living in Sleepy Eye. Funeral services will be held at 2pm on Saturday, January 9, 2021 from St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church in Evan with burial to follow in Prairieville Cemetery, rural Evan. Visitation will be held on Saturday, January 9, 2021, from 1pm until 2pm, at the church. The family prefers memorials to donor’s choice. Arrangements are with Nelson-Hillestad Funeral Service of Morgan.
Arlene Bertha (Krenz) Christensen, the daughter and youngest child of Ferdinand and Bertha (Utecht) Krenz, was born on June 18, 1924, in Prairieville Township, Brown County. She was baptized and confirmed at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Sleepy Eye. She attended School District #29 and St. John’s Parochial School. On May 23, 1946, Arlene married Milo Christensen at St. John’s Lutheran Parsonage and settled on a farm in Eden Township. Arlene took pride in being a dedicated farm wife, making many meals, raising and butchering chickens and planting large gardens to provide food for the family. One of her favorite things to do was to can the produce that she grew, numerous crates of fresh fruit and all kinds of pickles; she continued to can peaches until the age of 95. Milo and her shared 68 years of marriage and raised five children. Arlene always had a deck of cards handy and didn’t need to be asked twice to play. She loved listening to the Statler Brothers, old-time music and watching Lawrence Welk on Saturday nights. She was a Minnesota Twins fan for over 55 years and watched every game, and tolerated the Minnesota Vikings, always wishing for that Super Bowl win. In their younger years, Milo and she enjoyed traveling to Europe and to parts of the U.S. Arlene’s greatest joy was her children and grandchildren and she loved keeping up with their lives. Her family adored her caring ways and quick wit. She was involved with her church at St. Matthews and enjoyed her pastoral visits from Pastor Becca. She also enjoyed bird watching, the color blue, lemon meringue pie, drinking coffee and looking forward to her weekly hair appointments, saying “hair days are the best days!” Arlene moved to Countryside Assisted Living in Sleepy Eye in 2014 and very much enjoyed being with old friends and meeting new dear friends there. The family would like to thank Dr. Harman Dhaliwal and the staff at the Sleepy Eye Medical Center, Rice Hospice in Willmar and a special thank you to Nancy Windschitl and the Countryside Staff, Mike Pyan and the Sleepy Eye Area Home Health Staff and Allina Health Hospice of New Ulm for their exceptional loving care and friendship given to Arlene over the past few years.
Arlene is survived by her children Milo, Jr. (Barbara) Christensen of Morgan; Donna Christensen of Minnetonka; Michael (Nancy) Christensen of Wells; and Betsy (Daniel) Hallberg of Kandiyohi; Ten grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren: Sara (Gavin) Burns, Elizabeth and Colin; Stephanie (Chris) Batt; Wayne Christensen; Ross Christensen; Andrea (Matt) Neubauer, Brylee and Emmett; Liza (Chris) Esterly, Cora and Lars; Simon (Alyssa) Christensen and Clyde; Brittney Arlene Hallberg (special friend Steve Martin), Brandon (Becky) Hallberg, Alayna and Levi; and Kara Hallberg (fianceé Michael Nilius). Also survived by her sister-in-law and dear friend, Betty Krenz of Sleepy Eye and other relatives and friends. Preceded in death by her parents; husband Milo Christensen, Sr.; her daughter and son-in-law Sonja and Al Rehbein; sisters Verna Krenz, Esther (George) Lochner, Hildegaard (Raymond) Meinert; brothers Alfred (Helen), Elroy (Hazel), Ferd, infant brother, Arthur, and many other friends and relatives.