Craig Joseph Jensen
Craig Joseph Jensen, 75, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, passed away peacefully in Henderson, Nev., on Jan. 24, 2021.
He was born in Bakersfield, Calif., on Oct. 14, 1945, to Lucille and Maurice Jensen. Craig grew up in Clinton, Iowa, and upon graduation from St. Mary's High School in 1964, he joined the U.S. Air Force and spent his deployment in Germany. After his honorable discharge in 1970, he returned to Clinton where he received his electronics engineering degree from Clinton Community College.
Craig was preceded in death by both parents and is survived by his beautiful and exceptionally tolerant wife, Constance; his four children, Troy (Danette) and Christina "Rina" Jensen, Amy (Rob) Stanfill and Lauren Bobis; and three granddaughters, Ryann and Rilee Jensen and Lucy Stanfill.
He was the oldest of eight incredibly smart brothers and sisters: Jay (Patricia) Jensen, Mary Jensen Ortega, Ann (Rick) Trine, Cathy (Eldon) Arensdorf, Bob (Jennifer) Jensen, Barb (Bob) Scott and Mark (Denise) Jensen. This wonderfully close family gave Craig 20 nieces and nephews and they all loved Craig the most, well, in his age group anyway. Also, because Craig had the swimming pool and loved to host all his family over the Fourth of July weekend.
In 1987 Craig started his own company, Emerald Engineering, which became Crystal Group Inc in 1991. His driving force within the company was his commitment to quality and attention to detail. Crystal's products and services helped modernize military communications, helped to train our nation's defense systems, and most importantly supported hundreds of families. Craig always believed the company's most valuable asset was the employees and when he retired in 2011 well, he hated retirement and said he would go back to sweep floors if they let him, but we digress he sought a company who would take care of the employees. Dexter Apache Holdings was that company, and he was happy to be passing his proudest professional accomplishment straight into the hands of the employees. Crystal Group is now a 100 percent employee-owned company, thank you DAH. He left a legacy few will match.
If you knew Craig, you knew him to be direct and opinionated, a trait that often was misunderstood by those he just met. You also knew he had a heart the size of the galaxy. He loved to debate and encouraged everyone to truly shift their own paradigms. He was quick to apologize if he thought he had caused pain and fully expected people to accept responsibility for their actions especially his children.
He was a talented woodworker, though only his family benefited from that creative outlet. He was an entrepreneur and inventor, fierce liberal, avid golfer, pilot and lover of family.
He always kept his promises, smiled with his whole face, and did his best to support everyone in his life. His most admirable quality was that he always told it to you straight. The straight may have lacked finesse, but you knew the intention was fully from a place of love.
Craig believed everyone should have an opportunity to get an education if they wanted, so please honor his memory by donating to the Crystal Group Scholarship Fund in lieu of flowers. Seriously Flowers were a waste, unless he was getting them for his wife, and his wife wants you to give a kid a scholarship, so does the rest of his family
Please send checks to Crystal Group Scholarship Fund, c/o Crystal Group at 855 Metzger Dr., Hiawatha, IA 52233.
He was adamant about social distancing and safety surrounding COVID-19, so we're going to do as he would want and have a Celebration of Life later this year, when it's safer to gather.