Gladys Christianson, age 93, of Hendricks, MN passed away on Wednesday, March 17, 2021 at the Hendricks Nursing Home. Celebration of life will be at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, March 26, 2021 at Bethel Lutheran Church in Astoria, SD. Visitation will be held Friday one hour prior to the service at the church. Burial will be at Bethlehem Cemetery, rural Astoria, SD. Houseman Funeral Home, Birk Chapel of Hendricks, MN is entrusted with the arrangements.
Gladys Luella (Schmidt) Christianson was born on August 8, 1927, the last of eight children, to Gerhard Sr. and Martha (Boerner) Schmidt at Watertown, SD. At the age of 5 the family moved from Bemis to a farm near Clear Lake, SD. After graduating from Clear Lake High in 1945 she attended summer school at General Beadle Normal (now Dakota State University). Gladys held various positions including school teacher, Deputy Superintendent of Deuel County Rural Schools, and Lab/Xray technician. On December 16, 1950 she married T. Loren Christianson of Astoria. After his discharge from the Army in January 1953 they moved to the farm in rural Astoria. Gladys was very involved in church and community. She served as a church organist for 50 years and held many offices within Bethlehem and Bethel Churches. She was involved in the American Legion Auxiliary, 4-H (leader for 16 years), Farmers Union, Extension Club, and Capitol Club. She enjoyed traveling with Loren to many states and Washington, DC for National Rural Water. Gladys had a quilting business – Tender Loving Comforters – and quilted hundreds of quilts for her family and many others. Seven children were born to Gladys and Loren: Theodore (Ted) Kent, (deceased 2003), twins Peggy Annette and Valerie Ann, (who died at birth), Jane Elise, Steven Loren, Susan Kay and Lori Beth. In 2007, they left the farm homesteaded by Loren’s grandfather and moved to Hendricks, MN.
She is survived by her son Steven (Kris), Lincoln, NE; daughter-in-law Elizabeth, Astoria; daughters: Jane (Bill) Nelson, of Burbank, SD; Sue (Doug) Ensley, Athens, GA; and Lori Talbott, Sioux Falls; eleven grandchildren: Amanda (Roger) Mead, Sioux Falls; Jesse (Tonya) Christianson of Astoria; John Nelson, Rapid City; Rachel Nelson, Rapid City; Tara (Jesse) Neese, Omaha, NE; Kaia Nelson, a traveling nurse; Tyler (Amanda) Christianson, Omaha, NE; Dr. Sara (Cole) Neibauer, Springfield, MO; Ian (Sarah) Ensley, Cheney, KS; Bethany (Adam) Sherrer, Marietta , GA; Amber (Eric) Johnson North Liberty, IA; eleven great-grandchildren: Jacob and Ava Neese; Pacific Coster; Theodore Dakota and Skye Christianson; Joseph and Jameson Mead; Isaac, Noah and baby girl Ensley to arrive in May; Lauren Sherrer; and two step-great-grandsons: Brenden and Jakob Johnson.; sister-in-law Esther Krause, Clear Lake; cousin Charlo (Merle) Bleeker; and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband T. Loren, their son Ted, twin daughters Peggy and Valerie, grandson Jonathan Talbott, her parents and siblings.