Dorene Kay Anderson, age 74, passed away at home Thursday, March 27, 2014 surrounded by the love of her family. She was born to Harry and Henrietta Misegadis Dirks on Nov. 26, 1939 in Great Bend.
A life-long member of the Lutheran Church, she was baptized in Hope Lutheran Church at Rush Center and confirmed in Peace Lutheran Church of Albert, Kan.
After the family moved to Scott County to farm, Dorene attended the Shallow Water schools and graduated from high school in 1957. She graduated from Bethany College in 1961 with an education degree.
On June 18, 1961, she was united in marriage to college classmate Donald L. Anderson of Lindsborg. To this union were born two sons, Greg and Brian.
Dorene and Don taught in Colby from 1961 until 1974 when they moved to Lindsborg, where Don was employed by the Kansas National Education Association and Dorene became the director of the Lindsborg Chamber of Commerce. She continued in that position until retirement in 2004.
Dorene was a vital member of Messiah Lutheran Church, serving on the church council and providing leadership on several committees and organizations and teaching Sunday School. She also served on the Sandzén Membership Committee, the Lindsborg Sister City Committee, Master Gardener program, Hyllningsfest Committee, Mid-Summer’s Day Committee, Lindsborg Community Foundation, Lindsborg’s 125th Anniversary Committee, the Philanthropic Education Organization, Business Professional Women and Kansas Dialogue. She and Don represented Lindsborg at numerous events during his 12 years as the city’s mayor and visited Sweden in that capacity.
Dorene was the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including the Distinguished Service Award for the Travel Industry Association of Kansas. Dorene and Don together were the 2009 Hyllningsfest King and Queen, and in 2011 were awarded the Bethany College Alumni Lifetime Achievement Award.
Dorene’s greatest role in life may have been as mother and grandmother. Dorene was affectionately known as “Nana” by all family members. Her family had expanded to 25 grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.
Dorene was preceded in death by her father Harry Dirks and a grandchild, Elyse Anderson. She is survived by her husband Don of Lindsborg, mother Henrietta Dirks of Lindsborg, sons Greg and wife Lori of  Newton and Brian and wife Rhonda of Lindsborg, 25 grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. She is survived also by her brother Roger Dirks and wife Cindy of Topeka, sister-in-law Jeanette and Harlan Shogren of Lindsborg, brothers-in-law John and Pat Anderson of Salina and Marvin and Leah Ann Anderson of Lindsborg, and many nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be from 4 to 7 p.m. Sunday, March 30, with family present from 6 to 7 p.m. at Christians Funeral Home, Lindsborg.
Private family burial will be at Elmwood Cemetery, Lindsborg.
A memorial service for family and friends will be at 11 a.m. Monday, March 31 at Messiah Lutheran Church, Lindsborg.
Dorene loved color—colorful flowers, colorful sunsets, cheerful dispositions—and wanted her memorial service to be an uplifting occasion. It was her request that all who attend the service wear cheerful, bright colors.
Memorials may be designated for the Messiah Lutheran Church, Bethany College or Mae Walline Nursing Scholarship at Lindsborg Community Hospital in care of Christians Funeral Home, 103 N. Washington, PO Box 386 Lindsborg, KS, 67456.
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