Interview by Jon Christiansen

Virginia Christoffersen

The town of Lyons has seen a lot things come and go over the years. The old bowling alley, the roller rink, two movie theaters, and much more. But one thing, or person rather, has stood the test of time. That person is Virginia Christoffersen, who, since November 24, 1931, has spent the entirety of her life living in the quaint town of Lyons, Nebraska.

Virginia was born in Lyons on November 24,1931 to her parents Henry and Louise Schroeder. Along with her two brothers, Virginia attended Country School District 69. When she was in the 8th grade her family moved into town where she has since stayed. After moving into town she also attended Lyons High School and graduated in 1948. Virginia said that she never went to college but was a hard worker so she was able to provide for herself outside of school. Three years after graduating, Virginia married her husband Earl Christoffersen in April of 1951.

Virginia’s first major job was at Schweser’s Store in Fremont, which has since gone out of business. She began working at Schweser’s right out of high school, and when she was done working there she took up a job at Hormel packing plant, also in Fremont. Her husband Earl owned a successful trucking business for 42 years until he was forced to retire. All the while that Virginia worked, she also did sewing alterations over 50 years. When she felt it was time to wind down, Virginia began to drive bus for Lyons-Decatur High School. She did this for 19 years and then decided to retire.

Virginia has lived in same house for exactly 50 years. They bought the house when their youngest child, Larry, was in kindergarten. Along with Larry she also has two daughters, Jane, 58, and Gloria, 63. All three of her children share the same ideals as their mother and decided to stay in the Lyons area after graduating from Lyons High School. Her children have also blessed her with nine grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

When asked about some of her most vivid memories and also her favorite things to do, Virginia seemed like she could’ve talked for hours. She talked about how in her younger years she and all her friends would go to the roller skating rink in the park. Another thing Virginia really enjoys is dancing. Dancing has been a staple in her life for as long as she can remember. The major reason that Virginia enjoys dancing so much is because her father, Henry, had a dance band in 40’s and 50’s. Even now Virginia finds time to travel to Minnesota with her family and dance at the polka fest.

After this interview I could truly see why Virginia has stayed in Lyons. Her entire life has revolved around this town, and I believe that if you want to be a “good citizen,” you must have the same ideals as someone like Virginia Christoffersen.

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