Peaceful Transition

Updated: Jul 31, 2021

Karen Sue Swensson (née Hanson) born November 15th, 1939 in Milwaukee, WI chose her peaceful departure on July 13th, 2021 surrounded by loved ones after a fast and furious battle with lung cancer. She is survived by her children, Christian (and wife Patricia), Carrie, and Kiernan; grandchildren, April (and husband Paul), Elizabeth, Leonardo, and Ryla; great-grandchild, Madeleine; grand-puppy, Tucker, and dear friends Colin and Betty. She was born into a family deeply rooted in the immigrant farming community of Koshkonong, WI. She met and married Sidney Baker Oviatt in Waterloo, IA. Upon his passing, she remarried and shuffled off to an exciting life of blended military family living overseas. She continued to enjoy writing about family life while living abroad. When the military brought her stateside, she got divorced and earned a business degree in Organizational Effectiveness from USF. She then started a new chapter in Chicago, where she began working for William Blair and Company brokerage, and went on to get her MBA from the University of Chicago. She couldn’t wait to retire, and eventually moved to Sun City, Texas to be closer to family. She found great joy in experiencing and writing her Norwegian family history.

In lieu of flowers or gifts, the family requests that you make a donation in Karen’s name to an organization whose work brings you joy. For Karen, life was more than being thankful; it was making others thankful. Please share which organization benefited from your generosity in the Forum collaboration section here on You can navigate to the forum from the menu bar at the top of the home page.

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