On May 16, 2022, Marie Jensen, the beloved wife of the late Albert Fredric Nels Christian Jensen (Al), passed away peacefully at her home at Fairwinds Retirement Community in Idaho Falls, Idaho. She died of natural causes on her 97th birthday.
Marie was born as Dorothy Marie Craig to Stephen James Craig and Ruth Jackson Craig in Crown Point, Indiana on May 16, 1925. After High School she went to work as a secretary/stenographer for Household Finance where she became acquainted with Al. Their working relationship quickly blossomed into something much warmer. The formal “Mr Jensen” and “Miss Craig” morphed into “Al” and “Marie,” (though never at the office). Despite her father’s misgivings, in 1944 she and Al eloped, having found true love in each other’s eyes. For over 21 years, they raised their family in Indiana – primarily the South Bend area. With four children still in their care, a career change took the family to California. Al, a Type 1 diabetic, died in 1971, with the three youngest children still at home. This necessitated Marie going back to work for the first time in 27 years to support her family. Marie subsequently discovered that she was a strong and independent woman. She strove to maintain that independence throughout her remaining life.
As a young widow, she settled her family near her son Nels and his family in Idaho Falls, Idaho, where she worked for Idaho Falls School District 91. After a few years she moved her family to Columbus, Indiana to be nearer her oldest daughter’s family. Marie worked as a secretary/stenographer for Arvin Industries in Columbus. She was appreciated for having an excellent command of shorthand, which she continued to use throughout her life.
Life events led her back to Idaho Falls, still with two daughters in tow, where she worked for EG&G, Inc., until retirement. She later worked for Christian Counseling Services. A longtime member of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church in Idaho Falls, her faith was important to her. Not one to proselytize, Marie lived her faith every day. She was an active volunteer in the community and received recognition as Volunteer of the Year from Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center.
Later in life – all her fledglings having left the nest – Marie returned to Columbus, Indiana, to once again be nearer two of her daughters. Her final Indiana years were spent living at All Saints Community, a retirement community where she was a very active resident. She made her final move back to Idaho Falls during the Christmas season of 2018, where she made her home at Fairwinds Retirement Community.
Family was very important to Marie, and she deeply loved each one of them. Though they are now coast to coast across the country, there is a closeness among them that meant so much to Marie. She demonstrated to her children that joy would be found through acts of kindness towards others. When she learned of people who were in need, she found the time to help them and taught her children to do so. Marie had a radiant smile and a wonderfully optimistic attitude throughout her life. Marie loved to play the piano and particularly enjoyed the popular songs of the 30’s and the 40’s. She and Al both loved music and laughter and passed those loves on to their children.
Marie is survived by all her children: Carol Wiegand (Art) of South Bend, Indiana, Nels Jensen (Ann) of Idaho Falls, Idaho, John Jensen (Mattice) of Crozet, Virginia, Gaye Keith of Columbus, Indiana, Lisa Jensen-Smith of Idaho Falls, Idaho, and Kristin Jensen (Tony Williams) of Kearns, Utah. She leaves behind 17 grandchildren, 33 great-grandchildren, 2 great-great-grandchildren, and countless friends who loved her very much. Marie was preceded in death by her son-in-law Bryan Smith (2007) and grandsons Orrin Jensen (2010) and Dana Jensen (2015).
Services will be held at Buck-Murphy Funeral Home, 825 E. 17th Street, Idaho Falls, ID 83404 on Saturday, May 21, 2022, with visitation and viewing beginning at 11:30 a.m. The memorial service will follow at 1:30 p.m. at the same location. This service is primarily to accommodate family and friends living in the northwestern United States. All who can attend are welcome.
There will be no internment; Marie requested that she be cremated. Her remains will be scattered during a family celebration of life at a future date and location when the rest of her family can participate. Online condolences may be sent at www.buckmurphy.com. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions in Marie’s name may be made to the American Diabetes Association.