September 6, 1954 – November 28, 2021 (age 67)
On Sunday, November 28th, 2021 Diane Frances Zapka Christensen passed away peacefully, but far too soon, surrounded by family.
Diane was born in Dallas, TX on September 6,1954 to William and Charlotte “Chick” Zapka and was easily one of the most charismatic and vibrant women to walk the earth. She was a daredevil who walked at 9 months old, acted, played all sports, and had to get stitches on more than one occasion.
The Zapkas moved to La Mirada, California when Diane was 6 weeks old. In 1972 she graduated from Neff High School, voted “Girl with the Best Sense of Humor.” One year later, on December 14, 1973, she married Gary, her high school sweetheart and Neff High’s “Boy with the Best Sense of Humor.” They went on to raise three children (all with pretty good senses of humor), Eric, Audrey, and Chloe, each 10 years apart.
She joined the LDS church in 1984 and was an active and devoted member. The Christensens became an eternal family in 1985. She poured countless hours and energy into Young Women’s groups and the Relief Society. She truly enjoyed mentoring others and sharing her beliefs and love for the church.
Diane worked at a celebrity accounting firm in the early 80s and often regaled her family and friends with stories of movie star clients and house-sitting for Jack Nicholson. In 1984, she left the firm to focus on her family. In more recent years, she worked as an activist, tirelessly gathering signatures and fighting to maintain the beauty of the land she lived on.
In 2005 Diane and Gary relocated to Utah, and in 2013 settled in Erda where she was able to live out her life-long dream of owning and raising horses. Unable to stop at just horses, she filled her property with chickens, ducks, fish, cats and dogs. Each animal she owned was loved and cared for as if it were a human.
Diane was an avid lover of rock music, British television, and all animals. She never met an injured animal she didn’t try to save, or a homeless animal she didn’t try to adopt. She had an impressive record collection she maintained all her life, and shared her musical passion with her family and friends.
Diane also had a great love for family history and genealogy. In 2016 she traveled to New York City to explore her roots. She often talked about future trips and looked forward to digging even deeper into her family heritage.
She loved cooking for her family and spoiling her grand kids. She constantly surprised them with new toys and their favorite snacks, and spent hours playing games with them and taking them on adventures.
Diane was kind and generous, but she was also strong, intelligent, funny, and fiercely loyal. She gave everything she could to the people and animals she loved, and left a legacy of humor and wit that will never be forgotten.
She is survived by her husband and life-long best friend, Gary Christensen, her son Eric (Melanie) Christensen, her daughters Audrey (Scott) Spence and Chloe Christensen, grandchildren Cameron, Isabel, Nolan, Charlotte, Jackson, and Madsen, dogs Maggie and Lincoln, horses Mouse and Dove, cats Angus, Ollie, and Remi.
She is preceded in death by her parents William Zapka and Charlotte Ciejka.
Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, December 3, 2021, at Rose Springs Ward 323 E Erda Way, Erda, with a graveside service to follow at 1000 N. 1200 E. Logan, UT.
A viewing will be held preceding the service on Friday December 3, 2021 from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m at Rose Springs Ward.
Condolences and memories may be shared with the family at Allen Mortuaries.