Harold Franklin Jensen, Jr.
Harold Franklin Jensen, Jr., of Oroville, WA, passed away peacefully on August 28, 2021. Harold was born in Ketchikan, AK, on December 18, 1951, to Harold “Hap” and Virginia (Roe) Jensen, and was raised primarily in Big Horn, WY.
Harold’s love for the outdoors was cultivated during his childhood, as he spent countless days in the wilderness, with his family and friends, on various fishing, hunting, and camping trips in rural Alaska and Wyoming. When he wasn’t working on the family farm or neighboring ranches, Harold played basketball, football, and ran track. As a young man, Harold moved to Montana, where he worked in construction and discovered his passion for coaching. Harold looked back fondly on those times and was quick to share many colorful stories about the adventures of his youth.
Harold obtained his degree in education from Rocky Mountain College in Billings, MT. On May 10, 1980, he married the love his life, Chris Higham, in Polson, MT. Shortly thereafter, he began his teaching and coaching career, which took him to several small towns throughout Montana before landing him in Oroville in 1989, where he taught until his retirement in 2018. During his tenure, he taught art, wood shop, alternative high school, PE, and other various classes, and coached track and field, basketball, football, baseball, and cross country. Of these, he was most passionate about art and track, each of which reflected his appreciation for effort and technique. During the summers, Harold would do various construction projects (including building his own family home), adding his artistic touch wherever he could.
Through teaching, coaching, and volunteering, Harold dedicated his life to supporting kids. His laid back attitude, patience, and infectious sense of humor helped him effectively connect with students of all backgrounds. He was also a constant fixture in the community, known for his unwavering generosity and reliable support. If an event needed volunteers, a neighbor needed a hand, or money needed to be raised, Harold was always there.
Harold was a great father, grandfather, brother, and husband, and nothing brought him more joy than spending time and laughing with his family. He also loved salmon fishing, crabbing, bird hunting, and building anything out of wood (especially toys for his grandchildren).
Harold was preceded in death by his parents, Hap and Virginia; and is survived by his wife, Chris of Oroville, WA; son, Harold “TJ" (Amelia) Jensen III, most recently of Boston, MA; son, Erik (Stefanie) Jensen of Denver, CO; daughter, Shalene (David) Champion of Atlanta, GA; sister, Valene (Randy) Goff of Eureka, MT; brother, Shawn Jensen of Wenatchee, WA; brother, Michael Jensen of Boston, MA; grandchildren: Agnes, Elin, Emersen, and Soren; several nieces and nephews; and countless friends; former students; and athletes. Harold was a beloved member of his family and his community and was a joy to be around. He will be sorely missed.
A Celebration of Life for Harold will be held at 1:00 p.m., on Sunday, September 19, 2021, at the Oroville High School track where Harold spent so many hours coaching and volunteering. In lieu of flowers, Harold’s family requests that donations be made to the Oroville Scholarship Foundation: www.orovillescholarshipfoundation.org. Bergh Funeral Service & Crematory, Oroville, WA, is in care of arrangements.