Doran “Doc” Michael Christensen was born July 7 1944 in Carroll IA and passed away at 77 years on January 27 2022 in Harriman TN. Those he loved and left behind are his wife, Bonnie Herndon Christensen; daughters Vasthi Wilson and Julia St Pierre; sister Joanna Christensen of Castle Rock CO; brother Paul (Sue) Christensen; daughter-in-law, Kim Lane, and son-in-law, Jason Short; grandchildren, nephews, nieces and “grands”. He was preceded in death by his parents Herluf and Vasthi (Magnussen) Christensen and good friends, Harold and Irma Neumann.
Doran lived in Laurens before moving and going to elementary school in Ames and Irwin, junior high and high school in Underwood IA (class of ‘62) and college in Des Moines (piano performance) and Iowa City IA (BA). He graduated from the College of Osteopathic Medicine and Surgery in Des Moines with the degree of Doctor of Osteopathy. In service to his country, he was stationed with the US Army in Belgium, France, Vietnam, Virginia Beach and Norfolk VA, and Dayton OH, and after medical school graduation, he continued his service in the US Navy and the National Guard. He also lived and practiced medicine in Cincinnati and Hamilton OH and Aurora and Rising Sun IN. He was an entrepreneur at heart having started businesses in VA, OH and TN. He spent the last years of his professional career with REAC/TS of the US Dept of Energy in Oak Ridge TN. His retirement was spent further developing their acreage “Valhalla Farms” on the Cumberland Plateau near Rockwood TN. Music was always a part of his life, and he enjoyed being organist for a Daysville TN Baptist Church.
On a more personal note, Doran was a leader throughout his life – high school music, basketball, and class of ’62, college music performance winner, med school class, national student osteopathy association, entrepreneur, endless service to his country in military, job, daily life and thought. He always gave his all and best to a task (parking cars, ice sculptures, horse farming, workshop building, radiation safety). He was a friend to everybody he met. His forthrightness stood out – you may not agree with him, but you always knew where he stood, so no need to tiptoe. He loved all of his family – DNA, extended, Danish-American and friends. All this is way too much to say but it reveals Doran’s spirit. His life was worth it. Those who knew him will fill in the blanks and those who are curious can ask or, better yet, fantasize – all great people benefit from the “pedestal”.
Doran had a love/hate relationship with any pedestal and asked for no service or memorials. He will be cremated. He liked the mission of St Jude’s so those of us who loved him are memorializing him and his life at St Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St Jude’s Place, Memphis TN 38105 (memorial form link – https://1drv.ms/b/s!AsZB7A0-UM2FhNhuYYQjczISa8416Q?e=cQmzDu). Evans Mortuary in Rockwood, TN, is serving the family of Mr. Doran M. Christensen.