On Thursday November 3, 2022, Karen Elise Crittenden, loving wife and mother of two, was called to heaven to meet her Lord and Savior at the age of 63.
Karen was born on October 2, 1959 in Hollywood, CA to Stanley Denton and Regina Drew Denton. She graduated from California State University at Northridge with a degree in Audiology.
Karen had lived her whole life in California and was blessed with her two children, Cameron Patt and Lauren Patt. In 2003, Karen signed up on the Christian dating service eHarmony and met her “knight in shining armor” Jeff Crittenden (he was not from California). On May 30, 2004, they were married and she moved to North Little Rock, Arkansas.
Karen was a salesperson at heart. In her twenties, she successfully sold advertisements for high-end magazines in Los Angeles and San Francisco. She also sold real estate. While raising her children, Karen was involved in various home-based multi-level marketing businesses – most noteworthy were Discovery Toys and Cookie Lee Jewelry. She was very successful with both of these business endeavors and won many accolades and earned many exotic trips around the world.
Karen was diagnosed with Stage 3 Breast Cancer at the age of 42. She had an insatiable zest for life and fought tirelessly and vigorously to live. She never let her diagnosis define her, control her, or get in her way of living life to the fullest. She loved to go on weekend excursions with her husband. She truly enjoyed living in Arkansas and exploring all the surrounding states.
Karen’s unwavering faith was a huge blessing in her life. She made many friends in her Bible Study Fellowship (BSF) classes. She relied on her faith, friends and family to help her through the toughest times.
In the last year of her life, Karen became immobile and as a result was homebound. Her friends and family rallied around her and all chipped in to purchase a van equipped to transport wheelchair passengers. She called the van her “freedom van” because it allowed her and Jeff to go out to dinner, to go on road trips, to get her nails done and to just go on simple drives. She was so grateful to be able to go on excursions again.
Karen was a fighter until the very end. She definitely had FOMO (fear of missing out), but her body, after 21 years of chemo, over 330 rounds of radiation, surgeries, hospitalizations, doctor appointments and too many broken bones to count could do no more. Her strength and unparalleled will to live was an inspiration to us all.
Karen was preceded in death by her mother and father. She is survived by her husband Jeff, her two children Cameron and Lauren, her sisters Andra, Samantha and Kimberly and her brother Randy, her stepmother Jennifer, as well as several cousins, nieces and a nephew. A memorial service will be held at Lakewood United Methodist Church in North Little Rock, AR on December 10, 2022 at 2:30 PM.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Cancer research, Carti, Carelink, caregiver support groups or your favorite charity.
Arrangements by A Natural State Funeral Service 2620 West Main Street, Jacksonville, Arkansas 72076. 501-982-3400. Online guestbook available at www.anaturalstatefuneralservice.com
Karen’s attitude was definitely a statement of her faith. The way she handled so many health issues & still had a smile was inspiring. I will miss her & that big smile. I’m thankful to have known Karen & to be friends with her
Thank you Rita.
I’m so sorry for your loss Jeff. May your memories hold you dear to your heart.
I remember Karen from a BSF group. She always brought a new insight or an interesting story. She was bright and delightful. I am sorry for your loss.
Loved Karen so much. What a beautiful example of a faithful warrior. We met years ago doing Cookie Lee Jewelry and enjoyed trips and annual events together. We stayed in touch via phone for all these years and prayed together and dreamed together. Sending lots of love to all of her family and praising God for her life.
Thank you Janet. I glad word got to you. I knew there was no way I would be able to get the word to all of her friends. Hopefully, through networking the word will get to most of her friends. 🙂
Our deepest sympathy to Jeff and your family. Karen was a high achiever and leader for our Cookie Lee Jewelry Company. A special person and dear friend. She will be greatly missed.
John Lin and Cookie Lee
Thank you John and Cookie. I hope you guys are doing well. 🙂
I had the pleasure of meeting Karen in 2011 when she recruited me into Cookie Lee Jewelry. We stayed friends for years and even won a trip to Jamaica in 2015 from the success of our jewelry sales! Karen was such a sweet friend and I will miss her so much. Sending condolences to the family and loved ones of Karen.
I’m sure sorry for your loss. I first met her during our Illumination Service at church, and she always gave me a laugh. She was a sharp lady.
My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.