Karen L. (Reitzel) Bjurstrom

January 18, 1938 ~ February 28, 2024 (age 86)

Karen L. Bjurstrom (Reitzel) passed away on 2/28/2024 after living in the Buena Vista area since 1992 with her husband Earl.  Karen was born in St. Paul Mn. On Jan. 18, 1938. Karen married Earl on Oct. 6,1956, also in St. Paul.

Karen was a was a wonderful wife to Earl and also a great Mother to 3 children.  Her first child, Cindy Lee, was born in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1958.  Cindy passed away in 2009 in Alaska.  Todd, her first son, was born in Florida in 1962.  Next, David was also born in Florida in 1964.  During these Florida years Karen was a military wife while Earl was in the Air Force.  Today our family is somewhat scattered with Todd living in Minnesota and David living here in Buena Vista helping Earl in his old age.  We all miss Karen terribly.

Karen was a wonderful lady with many good friends during her long life here on earth.  Karen was also a very religious person from birth to her final days.  She was looking forward to seeing her many friends and family again in heaven.

Karen and Earl were foster parents for 40 years in Minnesota and here in the Buena Vista area.  Karen fostered more than 100 children aged from newborns (1 to 2 days old) to 14-year-olds.  Both Karen and Earl are still foster grandparents to some of their kids.

 Karen and Earl enjoyed camping during their marriage.  They started in the Boundary-Waters Canoe Area on the Minnesota/Canadian border. Karen and Earl also camped in much of the Western United States, and in Alaska and the Ukon Territory.  Karen was a very good camper!

Karen also loved traveling.  Her favorite places were Mexico, (before it became too dangerous) and Vietnam. Karen could speak enough Spanish to ask people to speak more slowly.  Karen and Earl enjoyed traveling when they got to know the culture and people.

Karen and Earl traveled the same way in Vietnam.  They traveled from Hanoi to Saigon on their own, using mostly minibuses, etc.  They traveled without guides and again the people were very friendly. 

Karen also loved flying.  Karen soloed in light airplanes before she married Earl.  Wow, what a girl! Later Karen and Earl had access to a T-34 airplane in a flying club at one of Earl’s bases. Karen and Earl spent many hours flying together for fun.

Karen loved life and she was a great wife and mother to her family.  She also had many good friends and was a wonderful person to get to know!  She will always be loved! 

There won’t be any services held per Karen’s wishes.

Dan R