Cover photo for Marlene Lucille Jensen's Obituary
Marlene Lucille Jensen Profile Photo
1946 Marlene 2021

Marlene Lucille Jensen

October 21, 1946 — November 1, 2021

Marlene Lucille Barrett Jensen 75, died Monday November 1, 2021 at Seasons Hospice.

Marlene was born October 21, 1946 to Merlin and Lucille (Rees) Barrett. She was baptized at the Methodist Church in Audubon. She was raised on a farm near Ross, Iowa until her parents bought a farm in Melville Township. She attended a one room school house until school consolidation brought her to Audubon in 6th grade (again a one room school building on the school grounds). She graduated from the new High School at Audubon Community Schools with the Class of 1965, a class that was the largest after World War II ended.

When her parents bought their farm, she traveled on a school bus with others in the area including Ron Jensen who lived a couple of miles away. He enjoyed talking with her and over time it became a high school romance even after Ron graduated and went to Iowa State University. The high school sweethearts married on June 4, 1965, in Onawa Iowa. She then worked at Central National Bank in Des Moines at nights supporting the family.

When Ron graduated they moved to the Mid Hudson Valley, New York to work for IBM. This was quite a change for two farm kids and lead to a whole new culture and environment but it was a start of her love of travel. They were able to visit New York City and numerous historic sites in the area. Marlene and Ron had a stillborn daughter named Angela and then later two sons Joel and Ryan. Both sons were born at Vassar Brothers Hospital in Poughkeepsie.

In 1975, they transferred to the IBM Rochester location to be closer to family in Iowa. Marlene was the homemaker who raised the family and became a really good cook, craft person, and volunteer. When her sons were grown she took a one-year job as an ESL (English as a Second Language) paraprofessional to help South East Asian immigrants learn to read. She partnered with a teacher also named Marlene and the two of them helped numerous students learn to read in English. Marlene was rewarded when those students succeeded and especially when she was recognized by one of her past students. When Ron asked her who she was going to spend her time with in the next year (school children or Ron) she retired after 23 rewarding years. Their sons had graduated from college by this time and had children and Marlene enjoyed traveling to Iowa, Missouri, Michigan, Colorado, Wisconsin, and Colorado to spend time with family.

Marlene and Ron had the opportunity to travel around the country (only missed two states) and traveled in North America, Central America, Europe, the Middle East, India, Sri Lanka, Australia, and New Zealand. She loved the cultures and people and always came home with new friends and foods. Her favorite trip was to Denmark in 2013 with family (started at 9 and grew to 24) where the family saw where some of their ancestry came from.

Marlene loved her church- Bethel. She enjoyed volunteering, watching PBS, and reading. Her favorite event was the Christmas Tea where up to 30 tables were decorated with a Christmas theme. She really enjoyed the event planning and preparation as well as attending the event. She was determined that it would survive the restrictions due to the pandemic and in 2020 actually raised more money than the in-person tea had in the past. Marlene loved family; she loved kids and teaching, and cherished her holidays especially Thanksgiving and Christmas with lots of great food and family gatherings. She had a very nice way of connecting to people and making friends with family, neighbors, or around the world. Her family and friends will miss her smile, her stories and her food.

She was preceded in death by her daughter, parents and three brothers Jerry, Earl and Cleo.

Marlene is survived by her husband, Ron; son, Joel and wife Christy and their daughter Emily; son, Ryan and wife Cara and their children Lily and Dane; sister, Jo Albertsen and her daughters Jade and Amanda; brother-in-law, Steven Jensen; sister-in-law, Barb Hamilton; nieces, Morgan Barrett and Shawn Barrett; nephews, Bill Jensen, Rees Barrett, Taylor Barrett, and Tucker Barrett.

Funeral services will be at Bethel Lutheran Church 810 3rd Ave SE, Rochester, MN on Friday November 5th, visitation at 10AM, Service at 11AM followed by a luncheon in Bethel Hall. A graveside service will be held on Saturday, November 6, 2021, at 11:00 A.M. at the Arlington Heights Cemetery in Audubon Iowa followed by luncheon held at the St. Patrick’s Parish Center in Audubon. Casket bearers will be Emily Jensen, Lily Jensen, Dane Jensen, Rees Barrett, Jade Nutt, Amanda Scheer, and Morgan Barrett.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Marlene Lucille Jensen, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Graveside

Saturday, November 6, 2021

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

Arlington Heights Cemetery

, Audubon, IA 50025

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Burial

Arlington Heights Cemetery

, Audubon, IA 50025

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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