Duane D. Christensen, a native of Logan, Utah, died peacefully at his Wellington home on May 6, surrounded by his family at the age of 89 from natural causes.
Christensen graduated from Logan High School and received a bachelor’s degree from Utah State University in 1952. While in school, he worked as a sports editor at the Logan Herald-Journal and as a sports announcer at KVNU. He entered the U.S. Army through the ROTC program and following basic training, served as Post Public Information Officer in Fort Lee, Va.
Following his military duty, Christensen joined Phillips Petroleum Company in a marketing capacity in Bartlesville, Okla. In 1960, Christensen moved to St. Louis, Mo., to join what then was a small privately held company, Maritz Inc., which provided advertising, sales promotion, research and training services to major U.S. corporations.
During his 34-year career with Maritz, he served in several top management positions and played a key role in the company’s growth into a worldwide organization with sales revenues exceeding $1.7 billion and more than 6,000 employees.
In St. Louis, Christensen was active in many business and civic organizations. He served in leadership positions with the United Way, the Arts and Education Council, the Higher Education Council, the Metropolitan Association for Philanthropy, the Boys & Girls Club of St. Louis and others. He served six years as president of the St. Louis Private Industry Council, and in 1990, was appointed by the governor to serve on the Missouri 2000 Commission. In 1994, Christensen moved to West Palm Beach and served on the board of the Palm Beach Polo & Country Club.
Christensen’s greatest accomplishment was his role as a father. He valued family more than anything else in life. He inspired his children to be the best they could be and was always available to offer kind words of encouragement and love. He is survived by his wife, Gayla, of West Palm Beach; a daughter and son-in-law, Lauren and Tom, of Houston, Texas; a son and daughter-in-law, Ryan and Lauren of Sarasota, Fla.; and a son, Alexander of West Palm Beach, Fla. His four granddaughters, Brooke, Beatty, Briar and Lisle will miss him dearly.
Christensen’s kind, genuine spirit and sense of humor was loved by many and will be forever remembered by his friends and family.
A funeral service is scheduled for 11 a.m. MST on Saturday, May 12 at the Allen-Hall Mortuary in Logan, Utah.