Ray Jensen, 87, of North Hudson, died on Tuesday, January 22, 2013. Ray, known to his birth family as “Bud” was born on October 5, 1925 in Austin, Minnesota to parents Raymond L. and Cora A. (Torbenson) Jensen. After high school, as so many of the “Greatest Generation” did, Ray enlisted in the Armed Forces. Ray served with the United States Navy from 1943-1946 in the South China Seas aboard the submarine USS Lamprey SS-372. Ray often told stories of having home-made ice cream and fresh bread while aboard the sub. Ray was united in marriage to his first wife, Helen L. Aspnes, on November 26, 1949. Their union would be blessed with four children. After the death of his first wife, Ray would be united in marriage to his second wife, Helene Torbenson on November 4, 2001.
Ray was an entrepreneur who owned two shoe stores in Fort Dodge, Iowa. He later returned to school, graduating from Iowa State University with a degree in Industrial Engineering. He was employed with Fort Dodge Laboratories, and retired 22 years ago. After retiring, Ray then worked on many home projects with his children. Ray was a serious bicyclist, and rode many, many miles. He enjoyed woodworking, creating many items for family and friends alike. Ray loved camping, learning the Norwegian language, playing his trombone, and traveling to Russia, Norway, and Ireland, as well as new and exciting places in the USA. Ray built three homes, the first when he married. He went to the library and checked out a book titled “How to Build Your Dream Home for Less Than $5000”, and just followed the directions. The second home he built was when he purchased and completely tore down an old church, piece by piece, and used all the material, including the butternut wood from the pews, for a home for his family. The third home was built for his daughter Roxanne.
Ray was preceded in death by his first wife, Helen L. Jensen; his daughter, Roxanne Leiss; a sister Eileen Raak and his parents. He is survived by his wife Helene R. Jensen, and children Judy Jensen (Bruce Walter), David (Julie) Jensen, and Kristi Gibson; step-daughter Jeanne (Chris) Pratt; seven sturdy grandsons, five great-grandchildren; and dear nieces and nephews.
Funeral Services will be held at 11:00a.m. on Monday, January 28, 2013 at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 502 County Road UU, in Hudson. Visitation will take place one hour prior to services at church, and also from 5:00-8:00p.m. on Sunday at the O’Connell Family Funeral Home, 520 11th Street So., in Hudson. Services entrusted to the O’Connell Family Funeral Home of Hudson WI. 715-386-3725
Ray’s family is asking that donations be made to The American Cancer Society.