Becky Jo Kersten (March 5, 2021)

Becky Jo Kersten photoOctober 30, 1952 ~ March 5, 2021

Saturday, March 5, 2022
2:00 PM
Burmeister-Johannsen Funeral Home, Inc.
Harlan, IA
(get directions)
Burial of ashes will be in the Harlan Cemetery, Harlan, IA

Lewy Body Dementia Association

Mother – Irene Hansen of Harlan, IA
1 Son – Kris (Kate) Kersten of New Brighton, MN
1 Sister – Jane (Dale) Washburn of Centennial, CO
2 Brothers – Tom (Connie) Hansen of Harlan, IA
Ted (DeAnne) Hansen of Farmington, MO
1 Granddaughter – Sadie Kersten of New Brighton, MN
Nieces and Nephews – Sean, John, Andy, Laura, Derek,
Kyle, Stephanie, Becca, and Dean
Many Other Family and Friends

Becky Jo Kersten, daughter of William Harry and Irene Jeanette (Haferbier) Hansen, was born October 30, 1952, in Harlan, Iowa. She attended school in Harlan, Iowa, moved briefly to Higginsville, Missouri, returned to Harlan and graduated from Harlan High School in 1971. Becky received a Business Degree in Omaha, moved back to Harlan, and married Bob Kersten in the fall 1972. They moved to Huron and then Madison, South Dakota, while Bob was in school and where Becky was voted Mrs. Dakota State College. They then returned briefly to Harlan, lived in Onawa and Woodbine where Becky was a member of the PEO, became parents to son Kris, and spent a year as missionaries at Henderson Settlement in southeastern Kentucky before returning to Glenwood and finally to Harlan.

In the fall of 1987 Becky and Bob moved to West Des Moines, Waukee, and eventually Stuart, Iowa, where Becky worked at Brenton Bank and MetLife, and where she was active in the community, local churches, and especially the crafting community. Bob and Becky eventually separated, and Becky moved back to West Des Moines.

Becky loved woodcrafts, often handmade using her grandfather’s tools, and enjoyed sharing them with friends and the community at local craft fairs. Becky also loved knitting, sewing, and especially quilting, and loved nothing more than gifting her creations to friends and family. In 2017, Becky moved to Minneapolis due to health concerns, and lived with Kris, Kate and Sadie. Becky brought with her her love of crafts, love of family, and her courage and grace as she adapted to this new phase of life. Becky eventually moved to Brightondale Assisted Living, where the staff welcomed her for her positive attitude and spirit and treated her as another mother and grandmother.

Becky Jo Kersten died on Friday, March 5, 2021, at Brightondale Assisted Living in New Brighton, Minnesota, at the age of 68 years, 4 months, and 5 days.

Becky was preceded in death by her father, Harry Hansen. She is survived by her mother, Irene Hansen of Harlan, Iowa; one sister, Jane (Dale) Washburn of Centennial, Colorado; two brothers, Tom (Connie) Hansen of Harlan, Iowa, and Ted (DeAnne) Hansen of Farmington, Missouri; one son, Kris (Kate) Kersten and one granddaughter, Sadie Kersten of New Brighton, Minnesota; and many other relatives and close friends.

A Celebration of Becky’s life was held by her family at Burmeister-Johannsen Funeral Home in Harlan, Iowa, Saturday, March 5, 2022, with Pastor Phil Nielsen of Immanuel Lutheran Church, Harlan, officiating. Burial of ashes took place at the Harlan Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Lewy Body Dementia Association at The Burmeister-Johannsen Funeral Home, Inc., in Harlan, Iowa, assisted the family with arrangements. Condolences may be left online at

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One Response to Becky Jo Kersten (March 5, 2021)

  1. Laura Mace Palmer says:

    I worked with Becky at Metlife. We often shared our handmade wares with each other. I moved away but have thought about her often. I just heard the news today and it makes me sad. Im glad she is not suffering anymore but the world is a little less bright with out her in it.

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