Preston - Beth Christiansen Olsen
PRESTON — Beth Christiansen Olsen was born March 12, 1925 near Moreland. Beth was the third of nine children born to Gerald Christiansen and Florence Wheeler Christiansen. Beth loved growing up on the family farm and delighted in her father telling her brothers that she was his best worker. Beth attended Moreland schools and was the valedictorian of the Moreland High School Class of 1943.
Beth loved music. She began playing the violin in grade school and enjoyed this pursuit her entire life. It was the violin that brought Beth and her future husband, Lynn F Olsen, together. Lynn says that he arrived early for orchestra practice at Moreland High School on that first day. In walked a pretty, vivacious young lady by the name of Beth Christiansen. Lynn said he was instantly smitten. The two competed for first chair in the violin section for the next three years. The music teacher, Dewey Olsen, her future father-in-law, always chose Beth . Upon graduation from high school Beth was awarded a scholarship based on her scholastic merit to Brigham Young University.
Lynn and Beth were sealed for time and all eternity in the Logan LDS Temple on Dec. 1, 1943. After their sealing the young couple moved to California, where Lynn had been working for a year.
During their years in California, Lynn and Beth resided in Redding, Fresno, San Francisco, and Eureka. In their ward in Eureka Beth’s bishop extended an unusual calling. The ward had recently been divided and the bishop was dismayed to find that there was no one in the ward who could play the piano or organ. He asked Sister Olsen if she would accept the call to learn to play the piano and the organ to become the ward organist.
True to her devotion to her Father in Heaven and her work ethic she had learned growing up on a family farm, she accepted this call extended to her by Bishop Lynn F. Olsen. Bishop Olsen said that Beth’s vibrant testimony was reflected in her music.
Beth was a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She served faithfully in several callings including branch clerk, Sunday school teacher (beginning at the age of 16), ward Relief Society president, stake Relief Society President, Ward Young Women’s President, Stake Young Womens president, stake executive secretary, several years as an early morning seminary teacher, ordinance worker in the Logan Temple, temple sealing department secretary, ward organist, Relief Society pianist, organist in Logan Temple. Beth and Lynn also served as missionaries for 18 months in New Zealand 1986-1988.
Beth died peacefully in Preston on March 10, 2012. She was preceded in death by her parents, Gerald and Florence Christiansen; her brothers Rex Christiansen, Lowell Christiansen, Howard Christiansen, and Clyde Christiansen, grandson, David Olsen and granddaughter Andrea Siebold.
She is survived by her husband Lynn F. Olsen of Preston; her son and daughter-in-law, Dale and Mary Olsen of Cove, Utah; her daughter, Louise Jones of Kansas City, Kan.; her daughter and son-in-law, Lois and Robert Booth of Fresno, Calif.; her daughter, Helen Siebold of Pocatello; siblings Lois Olson, of Moreland, Marva Layton of Shelley, Ida Arave of North Idaho Falls, De Var Christiansen of Moreland; 20 grandchildren and numerous great-grandchildren.
Funeral services will be held on Thursday, March 15, 2012 at noon in the Preston South Stake Center, 55 East 1st South with Bishop Mark Beckstead conducting. A viewing will be held Wednesday from 6-8 p.m. at Webb Funeral Home, 1005 South 800 East, in Preston and Thursday from 10:30-11:30 a.m. at the stake center. Interment will be in the Moreland Cemetery.
Memories and condolences may be shared with the family at www.webbmortuary.com.