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Terry Bjornsen


On Friday, March 15, 2019, Terry Bjornsen, loving husband, father of four children and grandfather of 12, passed away at age 82. A lifelong resident of Cedar Rapids, Terry was born Oct. 6, 1936 to H.J. and Evelyn (Fisher) Bjornsen. He was a graduate of Franklin High School and attended Iowa State University, the University of Iowa and Coe College. Terry met Marjorie Huisman at Coe College and they wed on Sept. 16, 1961. They celebrated 57 years of marriage together.
A visitation will be held on Wednesday, March 20, from 4 to 7 p.m. at Cedar Memorial Park Funeral Home, 4200 First Ave. NE, Cedar Rapids. Private family services will be held at a later date.
Terry was the third generation to run the family business, Bjornsen Construction/Bjornsen Investment Corp. He pioneered the condominium concept in Eastern Iowa and specialized in multi-family, commercial and industrial building development. Terry never retired from the family business and proudly celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2012.
Working in the family business from a very young age, Terry and his family were excavation and concrete contractors in Cedar Rapids and Eastern Iowa, specializing in foundations, drives, sidewalks and sewer construction. As a visionary and real estate developer, Terry designed and built single-family subdivisions in every quadrant of Cedar Rapids. He built, managed and leased over 2,000 apartments and condominiums and developed warehouses, commercial buildings and offices. Terry's sons Greg, Steve and Kevin are now the fourth generation to run the family business, and grandson Alec is the fifth generation.
Terry was a passionate yet private supporter of the community, especially organizations that benefited education and youth sports. He proudly donated land for the Metro Youth football fields and enjoyed watching his sons and grandchildren play there.
Family meant everything to Terry. He loved spending time with his 12 grandchildren and, together with Marge, made it a priority to attend their activities and events. Terry loved to travel and vacation with his family. He created lasting memories for his children and grandchildren by taking family trips to Lake Okoboji, Florida and Europe.
Terry was a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity at Iowa State. He was a lifelong member of the Cedar Rapids Home Builders Association and Westminster Presbyterian Church.
Terry was preceded in death by his parents. Survivors include his wife, Marge; children, Greg (Kathy), Tami (Mike) Foley, Steve (Molly) and Kevin (Lori); grandchildren, Morgan and Jacob Bjornsen, Amber, Anna, Tomas and Olivia Foley, Alec, Colby and Lars Bjornsen, and Clayton, Nick and Max Bjornsen. He also is survived by his brother, Larry, and sister-in-law, Penny; three nieces; and one nephew.
Memorial donations in Terry's honor may be directed to Westminster Presbyterian Church, 1285 Third Ave. SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403 or to the American Diabetes Association, 317 Seventh Ave. SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401.
Terry continued his giving by being an organ donor.
Online condolences may be directed to the family at www.cedarmemorial.com under obituaries.
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