Cover photo for Harlan Christmas's Obituary
1927 Harlan 2023

Harlan Christmas

September 27, 1927 — February 23, 2023

Harlan F. Christmas was born to Polly Ann Brobst and Chester Francis Christmas on the kitchen floor in Trilby (Toledo), Ohio. He is preceded in death by his parents, brother Chester Harold, and wife Luanne.

Harlan had an early interest in all things mechanical, and took the bus an hour each way to Macomber High School, an all-boys vocational school in Toledo. After graduating with an emphasis on auto electronics, he joined the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1945 and served as a teletype operator. Following his honorable discharge, he rode his motorcycle around the country before attending and graduating from the Spartan College of Aeronautical Engineering in Tulsa, Oklahoma. After working in aeronautic engineering, he studied at the University of Utah, graduating Cum Laude with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering in 1964.

He met his lifetime love, Luanne Mendenhall Kent, in Ogden, Utah at the Berthana Ballroom and they married in December, 1961. They had their first daughter, Barbara, in Ogden, Utah. They later moved to Arvada, Colorado, and had a second daughter, Holly. He started work for Torkelson Rust and they moved back to Utah, which made his love of skiing easier to pursue. He was able to remain in Utah working as a Mechanical Engineer throughout his professional career.

Although he was born in Ohio, he was a man of the American West: he loved the National Parks, high desert, and especially skiing and the history and lore of the cowboy. He and Luanne were avid square dancers and cowboy poetry enthusiasts. Harlan loved music, primarily western music, and you'd often hear him letting out a gleeful yodel on a particularly fun ski run.

If you needed help with a project, whether planning or building, Harlan was your man. He brought energy and creativity when helping friends, family, and neighbors. He was always thinking of how a process or product could be improved.

Harlan is survived by his daughters Barbara (Jeff) and Holly (Shawn), and his grandchildren, Sam, Chloe, and Zane. He also leaves many good friends, including Pat Heun, Kurosh Darvish, Susan Hawkins, Nell Barker, and Arla Funk.

The family would also like to thank the staff and caregivers of Home Instead for their care and friendship to Harlan. He enjoyed seeing each of you, playing pool, cards, and doing puzzles. We felt lucky to have had such loving people devoted to his care.

Harlan requested no services. If you'd like to do something in his memory you might go on a hike or a ski (or just outside) and marvel at the world. If you're feeling the moment, let out a "yip" or a "yeehaw" of joy. We're sure he'll hear you.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Harlan Christmas, please visit our flower store.

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