Barry Lynn Christensen was born on May 22, 1943, in Idaho Falls, Idaho. The third of eight children born to Thomas and Naomi Christensen. Barry grew up Southeast of Shelley on the family farm where his father grew sugar beets, potatoes and wheat. He learned to work hard from a young age and developed a love for farming, 4H and FFA. During his school years, Barry was involved in chorus, student council, speech, and served as the FFA vice president.
It was in school that he met the love of his life, Theresa Elaine Steffler. They developed a special bond that would keep them inseparable for the next 62 years. Barry graduated from Firth High School in 1962 and married his sweetheart Elaine. They moved to Logan, Utah, where Barry attended Utah State University and Elaine worked while expecting their first child. Their hearts were both broken when Michael was stillborn, and they moved home with her parents to heal their hearts. In 1964 they welcomed a healthy son, Kevin, and bought a farm and home in Goshen. They were sealed in the Idaho Falls Temple on May 24, 1965.
Barry started his own pig farm, which at its peak had 3,500 pigs. Over the years he raised bum lambs, bottle calves and began growing hay and eventually potatoes, wheat, and barley. He slowly bought area farms and built a successful farming business to support his growing family. They were blessed with three daughters, Lisa in 1965, Kaylynn in 1970, and Sandi in 1971. Barry and Elaine moved their growing family to their current home near the Goshen townsite. It was here that they welcomed Christy in 1977. Christy was born with a hole in her heart and they soon experienced extreme heartache when Christy passed on Christmas Eve that year. Despite much heartbreak, Barry and Elaine welcomed their last child, David, in 1979. Barry was a loving father who was devoted to his children.
While raising his family, Barry very much enjoyed coaching church softball and basketball. He also hired many local boys to move pipe on the farm, and became a mentor and friend to the youth. Barry’s father sold grain bins, and Barry had his own crew that would assemble and erect the bins onsite. He also helped with his father’s fertilizer business and sold potato harvesting parts. He served in many capacities with the Idaho Irrigation district for 20 years. He also served on the soil conservation board for many years. He also served as ward clerk in the Presto ward.
Barry was always known for his quick wit and humor. It was hard to take him seriously because he was always teasing. He always had a little twinkle in his eye and had some choice phrases that he repeated often. Barry had a special relationship with each of his children and grandchildren and made each of them feel special. He loved to tease every grandchild and it seems that each of them had an inside joke with their grandpa. Barry and Elaine’s home was one where everyone felt loved and appreciated, and they all enjoyed gathering in their home for parties and family events. Barry was a selfless man who gave endlessly to anyone in need. He was always worried about each of his children and grandchildren as well as his neighbors and friends. He was a rock and role model for not only his family, but for many people in the community. Barry was a devout husband who always treated his wife with respect and honored her until his very last day. He still referred to her as his “bride” and he will be patiently waiting until they are reunited again.
Barry is survived by his wife, Elaine, children: Kevin (April) Christensen, Kaylynn Grebstad, Sandi (Paul) Jenkins, David (Sherelle) Christensen, his 7 siblings, 18 grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren (with 2 on the way)
He was preceded in death by his parents; a son, Michael; and two daughters, Christy and Lisa.
Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, May 14, 2022 at the Presto/Goshen Ward Chapel, (792 N 1090 E Shelley). The family will receive friends Friday evening from 6:00 till 8:00 p.m. at Nalder Funeral Home, (110 West Oak Street Shelley) and Saturday from 9:30 a.m. till 10:40 a.m. at the church. Burial will be in the Goshen Cemetery.
Those who would like to participate in the funeral service remotely are invited to view the service on a live broadcast at https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCIhrmVZfSTt3P-9v0De8oBA/featured