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Life Story / Obituary
Spirited, loving, and gregarious Christine Anne Linson lived her life wholeheartedly embracing each moment. With an undaunted spirit, Christine recognized the gifts in Life’s joys and challenges alike. A dreamer from day one, Christine naturally found happiness in the simple things and encouraged others to do so as well. Treasured daughter, wife, mother, grandmother, and friend, Christine will be sadly missed by all who were blessed to know her.
1970 was a year marked by drama. As the Vietnam War escalated, so did the protests. The airwaves were filled with the varied sounds and sentiments of the nation in popular films like M*A*S*H and Catch 22 while the Beatles encouraged us to “Let it Be, ” and Simon and Garfunkel sang of a “Bridge Over Troubled Water.” It was in this vibrant time that Raymond Essex and Karen Kort welcomed their daughter Christine Anne into their hearts and home on August 6th, in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Christine’s father ran a local car lot, and her mother worked as a homemaker. Christine grew up in the good company of her brother William. Though the family moved around a lot during Christine’s early years, the eventually settled in Coopersville when Christine was three. This is where Christine attended elementary and high school. Unfortunately, Christine’s father died in a car accident when she was just nine years old.
Like many teens of the 80s, Christine loved to roller skate, go to movies with friends, and attend summer bonfires. Christine’s vivacious personality made her early jobs as a waitress for Randall House, Hardees, and DJ’s Pizza a natural fit.
After graduating from high school in 1988, Christine took an office job at Amway where she worked while studying business at Phoenix Institute and Davenport College. After several years of hard work and dedication, Christine successfully earned both a Bachelor’s and a Master’s Degree.
In 1989, after dating for a time, Christine fell in love and married Boyd Lamrock. The young couple met at DJ’s Pizza and made their home in Allendale, Michigan where they lovingly raised their children together during their ten years of marriage. Their son Mackenzie was born in 1989, and daughter Breanna soon followed in 1991. To their heart’s delight, Shelby completed their family in 1997. Without a doubt, Christine loved nothing more than being a mother. She relished each new adventure with her children and celebrated each moment she shared with each of them. She especially enjoyed the thrill of being able to take her children on vacations to Florida’s Seaworld and Disney World. The memories of seeing their faces light up in wonder inspired many smiles for Christine over the years.
The kids grew up enjoying Christine’s gourmet cooking; she loved putting on a spread and inviting others to share in her masterpieces. Each incredible bite of her beef and chicken, crab rangoons, delicious cakes, cookies, and bars, was infused with Christine’s love. As a hostess, Christine intuitively knew how to make others feel welcome and cherished. With Christine, people always knew they were enough, they were loved, and they were safe.
Besides her talents in the kitchen, Christine was also a pretty good seamstress. She made many beautiful quilts that continue to envelop her family in friends in love. Christine enjoyed painting with watercolors and made gorgeous jewelry which she sold. For play, she fancied searching for antiques and collectible dolls. With an insatiable desire to learn, Christine was a voracious reader. She loved a good novel and read many medical books as well. Time on the water also proved a favorite for Christine.
The depth of Christine’s spirit was never more evident than in the face of the hardships she endured. Diagnosed with early onset cardiomyopathy, Christine was forced to leave her job at Amway. And, in 2006 Christine’s daughter Breanna died at the age of 14. In response to these unspeakable challenges, Christine consciously chose to focus on Life’s gifts. She remained positive and looked to the future with hope, often sharing her dreams about what she eventually wanted to do and experience. Despite not finding a church that felt like an authentic fit, Christine did find comfort in Sunday morning services on TV.
Whether watching her favorite TV shows like The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, Big Brother, Hip Hop Atlanta, and everything on the Discovery Channel or following her favorite bands, Christine exuded enthusiasm and delight. Her music tastes varied.
She loved R&B, Classic Rock, and Classical music equally. She relished in attending concerts and especially enjoyed traveling with her daughter Shelby to see Blue October in Virginia, and a Beatles tribute band in Grand Rapids. She loved sharing the night life with her sweet heart, Andrew Linson, whom she met at Magoo’s and married in a whirlwind wedding and honeymoon in Las Vegas in 2003. During their years together, Christine and Andrew had a lot of fun times walking downtown Grand Rapids enjoying the festivals, listening to the live music, and exploring Art Prize.
Surely, Christine’s greatest joy came from her precious grandchildren, Iris and Gabriel. The twinkle in each of their eyes reflected Christine’s radiant spirit and embodied the many hopes she had for the future. A perfect day in Christine’s world was any day she spent with her cherished family whom she loved above all things.
After suffering a massive heart attack a week ago and never regaining consciousness, it was in the deep comfort of those she loved best that Christine drew her final breaths at 1:03 pm on July 19th, 2017. The world is clearly duller in the absence of Christine’s energetic spirit. May it afford comfort to carry her legacy of love, acceptance, and enthusiasm into each of our own days as a way to honor this beautiful woman who so powerfully touched so many lives.
Christine Anne Linson, aged 46 of Grand Rapids, passed away very unexpectedly on Wednesday, July 19, 2017, at Spectrum Health – Butterworth Hospital. She was preceded in death by her daughter Breanna Lamrock, and her father, Raymond Essex. She is survived by her husband, Andrew Linson; her children, Mackenzie Lamrock, Shelby Lamrock; her grandchildren, Iris and Gabriel Lamrock; her mother, Karen (Les) Youngblood and her grandmother, Pauline Essex. The service to celebrate Christine’s life will be held on Sunday, July 23, at 6:30 pm at Heritage Life Story Funeral Home, 2120 Lake Michigan Dr. NW. Relatives and friends may meet her family at the funeral home on Sunday from 4:30 until the service begins at 6:30. To read more about Christine's life, to sign her guest book and to leave your own memory of her visit her web page at www.lifestorynet.com