Christel Anni Towsley went into the arms of Jesus on Oct. 7, 2016, in the presence of friends. She was born Christel Anni Sprenger on Feb. 21, 1928, in Koenigsberg (Prussia), Germany, the oldest of three children of Hans and Johanna Sprenger. The family lived there until 1945, when they fled before the Russian invasion of Germany. They settled in Kassel, West Germany, where a few years later, she met her future husband, Captain William "Bill" Ray Towsley, who was stationed there. They married in 1951 and moved to the U.S., first to Georgia and then to Fairbanks. Christel's love of gardening began in her childhood when she went with her father to the family garden and continued after she and Bill moved to their home in Hamilton Acres. She grew beautiful flowers, especially begonias,and loved being an active member of the Top of the World Garden Club. Even at 86, she could be found mowing her extensive lawn and caring for her vegetables. Another passion for her and Bill was fishing, and they were often on their property on the Chena River, fishing for grayling. Christel loved fashion and spent years working at Zella's Dress Shop. Tall and beautiful, she would model the finest clothes and was a top saleswoman. Later, she worked for West Tours, using her experience and knowledge of traveling to help people plan vacations. She also worked at the Fashion Center on Cushman. During those years, Christel, always looking elegant, frequently modeled in the Cham Fashional. Because of her years as an officer's wife, Christel treasured her relationships with soldiers and families of Fort Wainwright. She was a regular at the base gym. She faithfully attended Northern Lights Chapel where she loved the adult Sunday school class. She also attended Bible Study Fellowship at Bethel Church for decades. Christel's relationship with Jesus was of utmost importance to her and a great comfort for her at the end of her life. Predeceasing her in death were her parents, little brother Norbert, and her husband, Bill. She is survived in Germany by her sister, Karin; her niece, Christel Mika, and family, and many cousins. She also is survived by cousins in Illinois and California, and in Fairbanks by many friends and especially her best friend, Maxine Whitney. A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 15, at Bethel Church, 1310 Farmers Loop. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Bible Study Fellowship. To donate, go to www.bsfinternational.org , click on "giving" and then "memorials and honorariums." Please visit www.legacy.com/obituaries/newsminer to sign an online guest book.
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