Longtime Kenai resident, Ms. Christina Huss, 79, died Monday, May 3, 2010, with her family at her side.
A funeral mass will be held at 4 p.m. Friday, May 7, at the Kenai Catholic Church, followed by a reception at the church.
Ms. Huss was born in Peetz, Colo., growing up as the sixth of 10 children on her family's wheat farm. She earned her degree as an RN at a college in Denver and after graduating in 1953 dreamed of travelling to Alaska on a hospital ship. She needed two years of nursing experience before getting hired on the Alaska-bound ship, so she took a job as a nurse at a rural Colorado hospital near her hometown. While working there, she cared for a young man recovering from a life-threatening farming accident. Soon thereafter, she married the young man, Mike Huss, and Chris put Alaska on hold as the couple started a family and had five children.
In 1967, Chris realized her Alaska dream when the couple took a chance on the oil boom. With the family dog and children ranging in age from 3-11, they packed into a Rambler station wagon and drove to Alaska in the middle of winter.
After arriving in Alaska, she was hired at a clinic in Soldotna. When Central Peninsula Hospital opened in 1971, she became one of its first employees. Through her career she held many administrative positions, including director of nursing and head of staff development. She was known for her tough management skills that she complemented with tender and thorough patient care. She worked for the hospital for 23 years before retiring in 1994.
"Chris was quiet in personality and strong in her morals and faith. She enjoyed socializing with friends and she and Mike hosted many parties and they loved to attend the formal parties that were common in Kenai's boom years. Later in life, Chris loved to play cards with her friends at the Kenai Senior Center and was a familiar face at the local bingo games. She was an avid reader, game player and knitter. Chris had a strong faith in God and was a devoted member of the Catholic Church," her family said.
Ms. Huss is preceded in death by her parents; husband; son, Bernie; brothers, Henry and Albert Fehringer; and sister, Helen Ellis.
She is survived by brother, Frank Fehringer and his wife, Faye; sisters, Irene Korbe, Bernadine Gantt, Theresa Koester and her husband, Don, Amelia Benisch and her husband Joe, and Darlene Tyson; children, Marla Patrias, Sandra Lewis, Michael and Keith Huss; brother-in-law John Huss and his wife, Marge; grandchildren, Ryan Green, Lauren, Greta and Owen Huss, Isaac and Aidan Lewis and Gus Patrias; daughter-in-law, Chris Green and her husband, Tom; and sons-in-law Ed Patrias and Tony Lewis.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Kenai Peninsula Food Bank, 33955 Community College Drive. Soldotna, AK 99669.
Arrangements made by Peninsula Memorial Chapel.
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