Northville Community Mourns Death of Lisa Christensen

The popular youth basketball program director was killed by her estranged husband in a murder-suicide Tuesday morning, police say.

Novi police found the bodies of Lisa Christensen and her estranged husband, Gunar Christensen, in this Novi home Tuesday. Photo Credit: Aysha Jamali
Novi police found the bodies of Lisa Christensen and her estranged husband, Gunar Christensen, in this Novi home Tuesday. Photo Credit: Aysha Jamali

Lisa Anne Christensen, 55, died Tuesday after police say her estranged husband, Gunar Donald Christensen, 59, shot her and then himself at their home in Novi.

Novi police found the couple, who were going through a divorce, dead in their bathroom Tuesday morning after going to check on Christensen when she failed to show up for an appointment, police said.

Lisa Christensen leaves behind two children – Mallory Weber, a 2012 graduate of Northville High School, and Mitch Weber, 16, who will start as a junior at the high school this year. Gunar Christensen was the children’s stepfather.

According to Novi Police Chief David Molloy, police think Mitch was in the home when the shooting occurred.

Lisa Christensen loved sports and spread her passion throughout the community. She worked at Northville Parks and Recreation and was in charge of the popular boys and girls youth basketball program. She was going to become the coordinator for girls lacrosse, said Jason D. Spiller, director of Parks and Recreation.

Athletic ability runs in the family. Mallory Weber attends Penn State University on a full soccer scholarship and was a star athlete at Northville High School.

Northville girls soccer coach Eric Brucker, who has coached girls soccer for 18 years, said Christensen was one of the most involved parents he knew.

“Lisa was all about supporting others. Always happy and energetic and liked to be involved,” he said.

He said she attended every game possible during the four years Mallory played soccer and organized concessions for games, parent meetings and team tailgates.

“It was just her nature,” he said. “That’s what she liked to do. She liked to be around kids and other people.”

Christensen’s son, Mitch, who now plays sports for Northville, also helped at games as a ball boy, Brucker said.

Christensen still attended the high school’s games after Mallory graduated, he said, because she loved the sport and showing support.

“She’s going to be missed,” he said.

The Northville Public Schools district sent an email Wednesday afternoon informing the community of the tragic death of Christensen. 

"We deeply grieve the loss of this member of our Northville Public Schools community and recognize the crucial need for crisis support for our students, staff, and community over the coming days and weeks," the email said.

Grief counselors will be available at the Northville High School Media Center from 9 a.m. to noon Thursday to provide grief support to students. 

Christine Henzi July 17, 2013 at 09:19 PM
Lisa was so dedicated to the kids of this community. She will be missed. Such a useless tragedy.
tinnorthville July 18, 2013 at 10:45 AM
Also our Secretary for the Northville Boosters. So much involvement in our community.


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