Clyde S Christensen


Clyde S Christensen passed away Wednesday, June 19, 2019, just shy of his 83rd birthday, from complications of pulmonary fibrosis and long-standing inherited thromboembolic disease. As he departed the life he had lived so well, he was surrounded by his wife, his eight children and daughters-in-law, and many of his 29 grandchildren.
Clyde was born June 24, 1936 in Kenilworth, Utah to Victor Monta and Clara Sumsion Christensen. He lived a happy boyhood, exploring the hillsides and washes of Carbon County with his four brothers and spending summers with his family at beautiful Fish Lake. After graduating from Carbon High School he attended Carbon College before enlisting in the Army under the G.I. Bill. He was stationed at Yuma Proving Grounds in 1955. Not long after arriving in Yuma he attended a church event where he met Nancy Westover. Their courtship spanned their time together in Yuma and his three-year mission to Norway for the LDS church. He asked Nancy to marry him shortly after his return, and they were married on June 16, 1961, in the Mesa Arizona temple. Clyde and Nancy raised six sons and two daughters in Mesa and Tempe. Their devotion to one another provided a foundation of love and faith for their children.
Clyde earned Bachelors and Masters of Science degrees from Arizona State University. He also completed coursework toward an EdD in Biology.
He taught Biology and Life Science at Tempe High School for 38 years and was easy to recognize as he commuted each day on his trusty bicycle. He loved teaching about the natural world and, more importantly, loved helping his students know that they were valued and valuable. It was not unusual for him to encounter students from previous years whose names he remembered and who in turn remembered him gratefully.
He was also a powerful teacher to his children, instilling in them a love for people as well as for all things that grow, creep, crawl, swim, and fly. He never stopped feeling wonder for the world around him.
He served faithfully in many callings in the LDS Church, including with the Young Men, as Sunday School President, as High Priest group leader, Ward Clerk, and for seven years as Bishop of Tempe 8th Ward. Clyde had the great pleasure of returning to his former mission when he and Nancy were called as missionaries to Norway from 2004 to 2006.
Clyde was a quiet, humble servant, husband, father, brother, and friend who lived by example. We can't imagine the world without him in it.
He is survived by Nancy, his sweetheart of 58 years; brothers Ted (Nola Myrl) and Ross (Peggy); children Erik (Sue), Kirsten, Victor, Erin, Rex (Shaleigh), Don (Mindy), Brett (Natasha), and Russell (Debbie); grandchildren Mac (Janeen), Kent, Josh, Ben, Grayson, Hal, Braddock, Jessie, Daniel, Meghan (Jon), Alex (Joey), Devon, Jack, Emileigh, Ashleigh (Harrison), McKay (Dianna), Carileigh, Elleigh, Lilleigh, Mia, Roxey, Carmen, Harper, Clyde, William, Grace, Joseph, and Louise; and great-grandchildren Leroy, Norene, and Skye.
He was preceded in death by his parents and by his older brothers Jack and Ray.
A viewing will be held Friday, June 28, 6:00-8:00 pm at the Del Rio Chapel, 1871 E. Del Rio Drive, Tempe, 85282. The funeral will held Saturday, June 29 at 12:00 noon. The funeral will be preceded by a viewing at 10:30 am.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the LDS Humanitarian or Missionary Funds, to the Phoenix Zoo, the Arizona Sonoran Desert Museum, or to a zoo or wildlife refuge or other charity of your choice.
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Published on June 26, 2019
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14 posts

Jasmine Chabot
Jun 29, 2019
I send you my sincere condolences. I pray that you can all find peace in knowing that your husband, father and brother had a wonderful life with you and that his influence and love will be cherished for ever.
Danielle & Kyri
Jun 29, 2019
Sending our love and sympathies during this sad time.
Sandra Solomon Memmott
Jun 28, 2019
Nancy and family, I’m so very sorry to hear of the loss of your sweetheart and father. But I felt joy as I read about the wonderful life he lived and the fine man he was. I pray the Lord will bless and comfort you as you move forward in your life. I’m so thankful to know you are surrounded by your excellent family and so many special friends. Again, my sincere condolences.
Kathy Jankowski Devenport
Jun 28, 2019
Mr. Christensen was my biology teacher at Tempe High in probably 1979. I definitely remember him as the guy on the bike. 😊 Sending peace and comfort to the family.
Barbie, Scott, Tony and D'Arcy Liddle
Jun 28, 2019
We will never forget the love and compassion that Bishop and Nancy Christensen shared with us as Leroy endured the last few hours of his life. Clyde was an amazing man who was so forgiving and gracious. Our hearts go out to Nancy and all of his family.
Patricia Carbajal
Jun 27, 2019
Loved him one of my bestest, rest in peace Mr Christian. 1973
Dub Dellis
Jun 27, 2019
I was a student of Mr C’s at Tempe High in 1979/80 (class of ‘82). He was an exemplary teacher - kind, thoughtful and generous. I’m sure the 16 year-old version of me probably tested his almost limitless patience on a regular basis. He had a rare gift of creating a fun and energetic classroom while maintaining complete control (“I enjoy your enthusiasm Mr Dellis, but let’s tone it down a bit, shall we?”). I worked with his daughter, Kirsten, at Farrell’s Ice Cream Parlor in the early 80s and it was evident to me that he was as good of a father as he was a teacher. He was a natural at both. I’ve carried many of the lessons I learned in his classroom 40 years ago with me today ...(could it possibly be that long ago?). The world needs more teachers like Mr C. He will be missed. I hope there is a bike lane in heaven!Read more
Michael Moreno
Jun 27, 2019
My deepest condolences to the Christensen family. You’ll always be in my thoughts and prayers.
Brent and Lorraine Jameson
Jun 27, 2019
We are grateful to see this obituary since we won't be able to attend the funeral or visit to express our love for Clyde and also the Nancy and the family. We're grateful for the years of friendship with so many members of your family and example that your family has been to ours. Clyde's example of quiet, loving service and faith have blessed us for all these years.
We know that through your faith in the Savoir and the knowledge that you have of the eternal nature of the family that you will be comforted in this very hard parting. Our prayers and love and our prayers are with you all.
Love, Lorraine and Brent
Casey Capps
Jun 26, 2019
Clyde was an exceptional teacher and student of the world around him. I had the highest respect for Clyde, as did most of the Tempe Union High School District's science teachers. I favored physics, Clyde favored biology, but that did not matter, because we both taught students! Clyde loved his students and they loved him. What better epitaph could an educator have? My condolences to the Family.
Lisa Harris
Jun 26, 2019
He was the best teacher I ever had. He was so patient and kind. He will be missed by so many. I will always have fond memories of him.
Lori (Buie) Hawkyard, Class of 1990
Jun 26, 2019
May the spirit of Mr. Christensen live forever in our hearts. He was an Awesome teacher and person. I enjoyed learning in your classes. Rest in Peace Sir.
Jun 26, 2019
I love you, grandpa.
Jun 26, 2019