Janette "Jan" (Barsness) West

March 8, 1951 ~ September 14, 2021 (age 70)


Janette Gayle “Jan” West, age 70 of Mounds View, MN, died peacefully at home after beating the odds and surviving over three years with stage four pancreatic cancer, on Tuesday afternoon, September 14, 2021. 

Jan was born on March 8, 1951 in Cannon Falls, the daughter of Herbert and Helen “Jean” (Wells) Barsness. She graduated from Cannon Falls High School in 1969 and went on to attend the University of Minnesota. She started her career in youth outreach with Young Life at Star Ranch in Colorado.

Jan retired at age 70 from her longtime career as the Director of Youth Programs at Hired in Minneapolis. She received numerous awards for her dedication, passion and influence on the lives of many youth throughout the Twin Cities. Her work was more than a career, it was a passion and a greater calling.

Jan’s faith guided her life. She was active in worship teams and mission work at the churches she attended throughout the years. She woke each morning to God’s glory!

She loved the outdoors, hiking, being in the woods, by water, and traveling especially through the Rocky Mountains, and photographing nature and people! She loved spending time with her many friends, family, and especially her grandson, Micah!

She is survived by her daughters, Erica Anderson-West (Kevin Anderson) of Shoreview and Robyn West (Nathan Burwell) of Bozeman, MT; grandson, Micah Anderson; mother, Jean Barsness of Cannon Falls; sister, Sue (Tom) Eaker of Arvada, CO and their children, Laura (Jason) Sands and family, and Dan (Jessica) Eaker; extended family: former husband, Stephen West of Circle Pines; in-laws, Stanley (Jennifer) West of Woodbury, Pat (Donald) Jordan of Kansas City, MO, Michael (Kally) West of St. Paul, Eleanore (Donald) Dixon of Peoria, IL, and Desmond West of Richfield; and many beloved nieces and nephews; Amy (Brett) Keirstead of Savage and their children. She was preceded in death by her father, Herb Barsness in 1998; and brother, Gary Barsness in 1987.

A private family service will be held at First English Lutheran Church, Cannon Falls. This event will be livestreamed and available on under her obituary listing. Interment will be at the Cannon Falls Cemetery.

Honorary urn bearers will be Stephen West, Nathan Burwell, Kevin Anderson, Eli Keirstead, Tom Eaker, and Dan Eaker. 

Memorials may be given in Jan’s memory to Hired Youth Programming and First English Lutheran Church.

Memorial Tree
A Memorial Tree was planted for Janette "Jan"

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Private Services

First English Lutheran Church
511 W. Belle St.
Cannon Falls, MN 55009

Private Interment

Cannon Falls Cemetery
721 State St. E.
Cannon Falls, MN 55009

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