Frederik Burr Christensen

  • Posted: Friday, March 16, 2012 12:01 a.m.
    UPDATED: Friday, March 16, 2012 7:58 p.m.

Frederik BurrChristensen
AIKEN – Mr. Frederik Burr Christensen, 82, died Thursday, March 15, 2012. Known by his family and friends as a Master Story Teller, “Folio Fred” Christensen’s story began on October 7th, 1929 in Savannah Georgia. Oh, what a wonderful story it is! Born to parents Frederick Holmes and Helen Burr Christensen, and the grandson of Harry Porter and Lila Collins Burr, and Neils and Abby M. Christensen, Fred grew up with the Low Country deep within his soul. Most of his stories evolve out of his youth where he attended high school in Beaufort South Carolina. His family played a vital role in this storied coastal town where they operated the lumber mill and hardware store. One only has to stroll the streets of Beaufort to see the fingerprints of Fred and his family throughout the town and the adventures of Folio Fred come to life. Fred met the love of his life, Elizabeth (Betty) Schurmeier on the beach at Hunting Island and dedicated his life to her. Being a Master Story Teller requires an audience and nothing satisfies that need better than attentive children and grandchildren. The arrivals of Frederik H. (Catherine) Christensen, Benjamin B. (Lois) Christensen, David C (Cathy) Christensen, Elizabeth Anne (Kevin) Alleman and Margaret H. (Jeff) Ray soon followed. Stories never grow old but new audiences are always welcomed. Fred treasured the presence of his attentive grandchildren, Paul, Tim and Mark Christensen, Greg Hudspith, Michelle Seigler, Kimberly Boucher, Kasci Hutchenson, Collin, Abby and David Ray, and Heidi Alleman. Then came even more impressionable minds with his great- grandchildren, Gavin, Reagan, Tucker, Jonah, Rose, Lois, Henry, Cecile, Walter, Sophia, Kaeleigh, Skyelar and Palmer. A list of Fred’s family is not complete without mentioning his “adopted” daughter, Marlyn Abner. How blessed we all are that his tales will be recounted for generations. Fred felt honored by the privilege of “fighting the cold war” through his service of 25 years at the Savannah River Plant. After receiving his education at Deerfield Academy in Mass., Amherst College and graduate studies at San Jose State, Fred brought his bride and young sons with a host of engineers to Aiken to design, construct and operate the “Bomb Plant”. While he was sworn to secrecy about his role at the plant, he was able to regale his offspring with tales of the wild turkey with two right feet, mutant alligators in par pond and other antics he played with the cast of characters he had the pleasure to work with at the Plant. Retiring at a relatively early age, Fred began second careers as a pine tree farmer and moonshiner. Believing long ago that alternative fuels were key to this nation’s future, Clemson provided Fred with a still so that he could experiment with locally grown crops such as turnips to produce ethanol. Stories are told that as he “brewed” up some experiments, locals would come out of the woods to offer their opinions on his “fuel”. Now that the Bio-Mass project has begun at SRS, his early foray into this field has proven to be visionary. Aiken felt the impact of Fred’s influence over the years. An Eagle Scout in his youth, he served the Boy Scouts of America for many years as a leader with Troop 110. As a story teller, he was naturally drawn to politics. He served on the Alcohol and Drug Commission as Chairman, served on the Aiken County Planning Commission, served as the County Chairman of the Republican Party, ran for the S.C. Senate, was a poll manager for 30 years and served on the Habitat for Humanity Board. Fred was the developer of the Braeloch and Steeplechase subdivisions and participated in the establishment of All Saints Anglican Church where he served on the vestry and as a Sunday school teacher. As this grand story neared the ending, Fred’s life was blessed with new friends who quickly were welcomed into the family. These caregivers listened with rapt attention to the stories of the tidewater marshes, defending our nation against the “evil empire” and the great adventures of Folio Fred. How fortunate we are that Melissa, Glenda, Francis, Paulette and Christine loved our Dad and cared for him as the last pages were turned. A man with Faith as strong as granite, Fred was embraced in the loving arms of Jesus on Thursday the 15th of March. There is no better place to tell a story than gathered around the Thanksgiving table, Fred’s favorite day of the year. Today he is seated at the Heavenly table with his parents and in-laws along with his sister Maude Vaden and a host of other friends and family who preceded him, listening to the greatest story ever told with his Lord and Savior. Enjoy the Turkey Dad and save some pecan pie for us. We will see you soon! The Family will share time with friends at Shellhouse Funeral Home on Hayne Avenue on Monday, March 19 between 5:00 and 7:00 PM. Services will be held at St. Johns United Methodist Church on Tuesday at 3:00 PM with The Reverend George Alexander and The Reverend Henry Sumerall presiding. The family has requested that memorials be made to ACTS, 340 Park Ave., Aiken, SC 29801. SHELLHOUSE FUNERAL HOME, INC., 924 HAYNE AVE., AIKEN, SC Mr. Christensen’s online guest book may be signed at www.shellhousefuneralhome.com

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