Obituary: CHRISTENSEN, FLORENCE

Published: Sunday, July 13 2014 10:41 a.m. MDT

Florence Goeglein Christensen"The Great Florence"Against the backdrop of World War I, Florence Mary Jensen was born on February 11, 1917. Florence was the last survivor of eight children of Peter Joseph Jensen and Artemisia Snow Jensen. She grew up in SLC graduating from East High School. She studied at The University of Utah and then received her degree from Brigham Young University. She was independent and hard working earning her own tuition for college by working at The Grand Canyon, Sun Valley and Fort Douglas Military Base.A true patriot, Florence had an immense desire to serve her country. During WW II she volunteered with The American Red Cross and served at an Air Force base near London. In spite of the bombings and the terror of war, she met the first real love of her life, Lieutenant William K. Goeglein. This encounter had all the makings of a war-time romance. In the midst of separation and uncertainty, they found each other again and were married in Mobile, Alabama on October 17, 1945.Florence and "Big Bill" had four children: Barbara Jane Marz (John), William K.Goeglein (Michelle), Linda Ann Christensen (Kent), James Robert GoegleinThey had nineteen beautiful years together before the untimely death of her beloved Bill Goeglein in 1965. As a widow and mother of four, Florence lead her family forward with grace and courage. A lady of elegance and determination, Florence instinctively was devoted to her family and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Because of her passion for the arts and her training as an opera singer, her church service focused on leading the music for the congregation. She was in the church choir and was greatly appreciated for her ability to hit the high notes.Enhancing the beauty of our world was Florence's life work. She was an active member of The Salt Lake City Garden Club; a member of The Assistance League where she sang in a group called "Act III". She was also a member for The Daughters of The Utah Pioneers. She did all this while working full time for The American Heart Association. She retired after 15 years with honors and awards.After eight years, destiny brought Florence another Bill. Bill (Willam) Christensen whose many accomplishments included founding Ballet West. Bill Christensen and Florence met on Christmas Eve. Their first date was "The Nutcracker". Willam asked Florence to marry him that very night. She married him on June 30, 1973. Together they were passionate ambassadors for Ballet West. "Mr. C" and Florence were married for 28 years sharing times in Aspen, New York and San Francisco. They also shared their children. " Mr. C" had two children from his first marriage: Roxanne Christensen Lazzara (Tony), and Lee Christensen (Edith). Florence is survived by six children and their spouses and 17 grandchildren and great grandchildren.Florence Mary Jensen Goeglein Christensen was a delightful complexity of strength and ultra sensitivity. She was loved by so many. Her beauty and spirit will live on forever through her children and grandchildren. She survived The Great Depression; WWII; the death of two brothers in childhood; and the death of all of her other siblings later in life. She also buried two husbands and raised four teenagers by herself. "We gave my mother a lot of trouble, but we think she enjoyed it." (Mark Twain)"Life is eternal. Love is immortal, and death is only the horizon." Funeral Services for Florence Christensen When: January 6, 2012 at 1:00 p.m. Friends and family can gather before the service at 11:30 a.m. Where: Monument Park 16th Ward Chapel 1320 South Wasatch Drive In lieu of flowers, please send contributions to Ballet West 50 W. 200 S. Salt Lake City, Utah 84101