Betty Christiansen

Betty Christiansen, 91, of Newell died on Friday, Sept. 27, 2019 at Good Samaritan Society in Newell.

Funeral services will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 2, at 10 a.m. at Bethel Baptist Church in Newell. Burial will be in Newell Cemetery. Fratzke & Jensen Funeral Home in Newell is in charge of arrangements.

Betty was born on a beautiful July day in 1928 to Claus and Anna (Clausen) Frahm in Cushing. She married her soul-mate, the late Dick Christiansen, in 1955 and they farmed together for over 50 years before retiring. They had three children: Janet (David) Sather of Sartell, Minn.; Mike (Lisa) Christiansen of Newell; and Judy (Dean) Funk of Urbandale.

How does a person best describe a woman like our mom/grandma Betty? Her children and grandchildren would use many of the following descriptions: Chief cheerleader — she was always so supportive of her family and always wanted to be a part of whatever was going on in their lives. Confidante — all of us could talk to her for hours and pour our hearts out to her always knowing those words would never be passed along to anyone else. Optimist — she could find the positive out of any negative and would make sure that we were searching for the positive as well. Joy celebrator/tear-leader — she rejoiced in the good times and cried with us in the tough times. Above all else, she was our prayer warrior. She prayed for each family member every day and perhaps several times a day. Mom shared her faith with so many people and she volunteered to pray for anyone that she met who spoke to her about whatever they were experiencing.

Betty was a daughter, sister, wife, mother, mother-in-law, grandmother, great-grandmother, musician, friend, homemaker, quilter and many other things, but above all else, she was a woman of strong faith. Her Christianity meant everything to her. Even in the last days of her illness, she invited people to attend the church she helped to found in 1959, Bethel Baptist Church in Newell. She loved everything about Bethel and appreciated the many visits, cards, letters and words of encouragement that she received from her church family.

Along with her children, Betty is survived by her “A-Team” — her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Her grandchildren include: Nicholas Sather and Christian Sather of Sartell, Minn.; Jill (Matthew) Johnston of Sac City; Megan Christiansen of Charter Oak; and Kate Christiansen of Ames; Nathan (Brooke) Funk of Elk River, Minn.; Bethany (Blake) McKibbin of Johnston; and Garrett Funk of Windsor Heights.

Her great-grandchildren include: Violett, Jasper, Weston, Archer and baby number five (due any day) Funk of Elk River, Minn.; and Louis and Orlynn McKibbin of Johnston. She is also survived by her brother James Frahm of Marshalltown; and bonus sisters: Joanne Christiansen of Newell and JoAnn Frahm of Galva; as well as many nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Dick Christiansen; parents Claus and Anna; her parents-in-law Henry and Lorenia Christiansen; her brothers: Robert, Arnold and Roger; and her sisters: Lavina and Selma; as well as several sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law.

The entire Christiansen family would like to thank the staff at Buena Vista Regional Medical Center, Dr. Crippen and his staff and the wonderful care team at UnityPoint Hospice for the care that they provided for her. We are deeply appreciative of the care and support that Betty received from the entire team at Good Samaritan Society in Newell. Although there were many team members that cared for her at Good Sam, we want to especially express our gratitude to Shirley, Diana, Tina, Heather, Diane, Kerri and Amber for the kindness and dedication that they showed her.

In addition to Betty’s strong faith in Christ and her dedication to prayer for her family and others, she was also deeply passionate about world missions. She and Dick gave faithfully to her “missionary team” for many years. Memorial contributions received by the family will be divided amongst her missionary team for their continued financial support.

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