Cover photo for Heidi Nell Hansen VanSolkema's Obituary
Heidi Nell Hansen VanSolkema Profile Photo
1973 Heidi 2024

Heidi Nell Hansen VanSolkema

March 22, 1973 — March 25, 2024


Heidi was a true unstoppable force of nature. To know her was to love her, and to love her was easy.

Heidi was born on March 22, 1973, in Provo, UT, to Linda Lord Hansen and Marc J. Hansen, where she learned resilience from a young age. Heidi always had great admiration for her parents and was especially close with her father and grandmother, Amy. As a child, Heidi moved from Utah to California and back again but fondly remembers her California summers as some of the best times of her life.

A creative from a young age, Heidi began learning violin and sparked a passion for dance. From that point forward, she lived an artistic and inspired life, where colors and music made up every corner of her world.

Heidi was 5 when they welcomed her brother Courteney Lord into their lives, and an unbreakable bond was formed. The same year, Heidi was faced with familial struggles and surgery but replaced sadness with strength and grew year after year. By age 11, Heidi was fully enveloped in her passion for dance, using art as a form of self-expression and a way to self-soothe.

Heidi faced the challenges of bullies, but it only strengthened her character. As she grew older, she made friends easily and was a trendsetter from day one, learning from a series of close friendships and relationships. Some of Heidi's favorite memories were her days spent living in the mountains and desert as an adolescent, constantly socializing and exploring.

Heidi's life was forever changed in 1993 upon learning she was pregnant with her oldest daughter, Cassidy. She moved to Michigan and began a new chapter of life. Heidi describes Cassidy's birth as the happiest day of her life, and she adored being a mother. She always said her life was like "The Wizard of Oz"; it was black and white until Cass was born, and then it turned to color.

To those who knew her, they knew she struggled with substances, but she always used her experiences as lessons to help others fight their demons. In the next chapter of her life, Heidi often let the demons win.

The universe took the next few years of Heidi's life to be a constant lesson. She was tested and pushed, spending years going wherever the wind blew her, all the while creating magic and spreading love unconditionally. She traveled from Utah to Michigan and back again until Sophie Coco was born in 2001. Sophie was born with C.H.A.R.G.E. syndrome—a rare genetic condition that affects a child's nerves, heart, eyes, ears, and comes with a myriad of other difficulties. Again, the universe tested Heidi, and though she stumbled, she did not fall. Still, she continued on, moving back to Michigan.

On February 28, 2004, Heidi's younger brother, Courteney, passed away, and she describes it as the worst day of her life. She survived this loss and stayed clean for her baby girl, born shortly after, Courteney Elizabeth, or “Lulu”.

Lulu was another sign to Heidi to keep fighting and keep trying. Throughout every hardship, she continued to share her magic with her youngest as she had with everyone before her. She never quit trying to be the mother she thought her girls deserved.

The next few years, Heidi struggled. She struggled as a mother and was constantly mistreated as a wife and partner. Heidi was very harsh on herself and felt constant guilt, despite being a role model to so many.

Heidi believed the best healing happened in nature and was always spending her time outside, whether it was driving the Alpine Loop or lying in the sun. She was always creating magic for her girls in every corner of despair and darkness.

Throughout her life, Heidi found interest in educating herself on all religions, most notably spirituality. In her early 30s, she took an interest in Buddhism and began following Buddhist principles, which gave her years of health, happiness, and sobriety.

Heidi was devastated by those she loved over and over again but found ways to show up in her darkness and continue to spread light. She often relied on the love of her father and daughter Cassidy to put her together again.

Having never been taught how to process trauma, she faltered and fell but never stayed down for long. She never shamed away from her lessons and was happy to help people learn from her trials. She was consistently seeking treatment, working on herself, and trying to live a life she was proud of. She fought to get better until her very last breath.

In all of her darkest moments, she would still drop everything and give anything to her loved ones. You could always count on her to walk alongside them as they faced their own demons. She was the ultimate cheerleader and believed some loud music, a treat, and the sun could cure almost anything.

On March 17, 2023, Heidi became a beloved Yaya. There was nothing in the world she wanted more than to be a Yaya. Charlie Coco gave Heidi the motivation to keep going, but her body vessel was exhausted by the years of constant trials she faced.

Heidi passed away peacefully in her sleep, listening to music in her favorite place—her bed. The place she found and gave us so much comfort. May she finally rest on the clouds in peace and comfort, and may she raise HELL. We will feel her in the summer nights’ warmth; we will hear her laugh in the wind chimes, and she will be in the magic everywhere.

Heidi Nell Hansen was preceded in death by her beloved brother Courteney Lord Hansen, her grandparents Donald J. Lord and Amy Lord, Milton and Bernell Hansen, and her aunt Sherrie Savage.

She is survived by her parents Marc J. Hansen and Linda Lord Hansen, her daughters Cassidy, Sophie, and Courteney, and her granddaughter Charlie Coco Ballard. And her millions of friends that she chose as her family.

A viewing for family and friends will be held on Tuesday, April 2, 2024, from 5:00-8:00 pm at Wheeler-Sundberg Funeral Home, 495 South State Street, Orem

Condolences for the family may be expressed on this page. 

To send flowers to the family in memory of Heidi Nell Hansen VanSolkema, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Tuesday, April 2, 2024

5:00 - 8:00 pm (Mountain time)

Sundberg-Olpin & Wheeler Mortuary

495 South State Street, Orem, UT 84058

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