Our Family History


You are currently anonymous Log In
 

Betty Jane Kjensmo
Female 1928 - 2009


HomeHome    SearchSearch    PrintPrint    Login - User: anonymousLogin    BookmarkBookmark

Personal Information    |    Sources    |    All    |    PDF

  • Birth  08 Jul 1928  Glenwood, Pope, Minnesota Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender  Female 
    Baptism  28 Aug 1928  Glenwood, Pope, Minnesota Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Reference Number  6057 
    Reference Number  johnson 
    Died  05 Jun 2009  Austin, Mower, Minnesota Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    • Austin Daily Herald, Austin Minnesota June 6, 2009
      Betty Jane Conklin, age 81, died Friday morning at the Austin Medical Center from complications related to Parkinson’s disease.
      Betty Conklin was born Betty Jane Kjensmo to Ole Kjensmo and Minda Thorson Kjensmo on July 8, 1928. When her mother was killed in a car accident in 1931, Betty was sent to live with an aunt and uncle, Edward and Josephine Thorson, and eight cousins on the farm on the prairie west of Brooten, Minn. In that home she spoke only Norwegian. She has more relatives in Norway than in the United States.
      Betty and her husband, Dale Conklin, were known for their work as advocates for gays, lesbians and their families. They were honored by the Philanthrofund Foundation of Minnesota in 2001 for their work with families across the state. The Conklins were frequently called upon to speak at conferences and to the state legislature on behalf of gay and lesbian organizations.
      She retired in 1990 from the Austin Public Schools system after 31 years as a teacher. During her career, she taught in a variety of settings including special education, kindergarten and first grade in the Elkton School District; second grade at Sumner School; and as the owner for five years of Conklin’s Nursery School, the first nationally-accredited nursery school in Austin. She began teaching in one-room rural schools in Kandiyohi County, with 30 children in all eight grades. She acknowledged that her biggest worry at that time was being able to start the wood stove in the mornings. She earned her degree from Winona State University and a fifth-year degree at Mankato State University.
      In retirement, she and her husband traveled the U.S., Europe, Scandinavia, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, Hawaii, Nepal and India. A lifelong music lover, her interests later expanded to baseball; she was a serious Twins fan. Her top priority continued to be St. Olaf Lutheran Church.
      Mother to four children: Daniel (Liz) Waterloo, Iowa, Deb Pinger, Cincinnati, Ohio, Lori (Walker) Conklin, Kenyon, Minn., and Tim Conklin and Jiwan Bajracharya, Vancouver, B.C. Canada; and six grandchildren: Jeni (Doug) Conklin Taylor, Jeff Conklin, Andrea Walker, Ben Walker, Alex Keller and Cora Keller Zoan.
      She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Dale, in 2000; sisters Wahneta and June Lorraine Kjensmo; and brothers Stanley, Rodger and Charles Kjensmo.
      Funeral services will be held on Monday June 8, 2009 at 1:30 p.m. at St. Olaf Lutheran Church with the Reverend Kristi Koppel officiating. Organist will be Neal Erickson. Visitation will be at Clasen-Jordan Mortuary on Sunday from 5 to 7 p.m. and at the church on Monday for one hour before the service. Violinist will be Susan Radloff.
    Person ID  I6057  Syverson Tree
    Last Modified  29 Sep 2009 

    Father  Ole Kjensmo,   b. 1887,   d. 16 Mar 1962 
    Mother  Minda Pauline Thorson,   b. 28 Apr 1894, Gilchrist Township, Pope, Minnesota Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 16 Sep 1931, Westport, Stearns, Minnesota Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Married  04 Apr 1914 
    Family ID  F118  Group Sheet

    Family  Dale Conklin,   b. 18 Mar 1928,   d. 2000 
    Married  18 Jun 1950  Austin, Mower, Minnesota Find all individuals with events at this location 
    • religious St. Olaf Lutheran Church
    Children 
     1. Living
     2. Living
     3. Living
     4. Living
    Family ID  F135  Group Sheet

  • Sources 
    1. [S16] obituary.