Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Funeral services for Vernon Everrett Nelson, age 88, of Conger, will be held at 10 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 20, at the Church of St. Theodore in Albert Lea. The Rev. James Berning and Deacon Mike Ellis will officiate. Interment will be at Pleasant Hills Cemetery in Mona, Iowa, with military honors accorded by the Lyle Legion Post 105. Visitation will be from 4-8 p.m. Wednesday with a prayer service at 7:30 p.m. at Bayview/Freeborn Funeral Home and one hour prior to the service. To sign the guest book, go to www.bayviewfuneral.com.
Vernon died Thursday, Nov. 13, 2008, in Ardmore, Okla.
Vernon Everrett Nelson was born on Jan. 10, 1920, to Fred and Carrie (Johnson) Nelson in Mitchell County, Iowa. He was baptized and confirmed in Mona Lutheran Church, Mona, Iowa. Years later he joined the Catholic church and was very active in St. James Catholic Church in Twin Lakes. He attended school in Mona, Iowa, through the eighth grade and graduated from Otranto High School in 1937. Vernon served in the United States Army during World War II from 1942 to 1945. While in the Army, he was trained as a dental technician at the Indianapolis Dental College. He served under General George Patton in Europe and was involved in the liberation of the Jewish concentration camp in Buchenwald, Germany. Vernon received the Liberty Medal for the Normandy Invasions and also the Good Conduct Medal.
On Feb. 26, 1949, he married Pearl Celestine Brandt in Sioux Falls, S.D. They made their home in Toeterville and Mona until 1954, when they moved to Conger. In Conger he managed the Conger Co-op Elevator until 1959, when he and his family moved to Lyle. In Lyle, he and his wife purchased the Lyle Feed Mill where they remained until 1970, when he returned to Conger as part owner/manager of the Conger Elevator Company. Vernon retired in 1986 and was honored by the Farmers’ Elevator Grain Association at their annual meeting in Minneapolis for his 35 years in the grain business.
Since his retirement, Vernon and his wife were busy gardening in the summer, enjoying their children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and many family and friends around the country. They enjoyed playing cards and going to ball games, mostly the Twins, Vikings and Hawkeyes. In honor of Vernon’s 80th birthday he traveled to Chicago’s Wrigley Field to watch his beloved Cubs — lose. Vernon loved his country and belonged to the American Legion Post 105 in Lyle for 63 years serving as commander in 1964. After his retirement the couple enjoyed bus trips across the country and most recently thoroughly enjoyed their trip to our nation’s capital, Washington, D.C. Vernon enjoyed spending time at the Senior Citizen Centers in Albert Lea and Conger. The last 14 years they have spent their winter months in Mission, Texas, where they have enjoyed many friends and “family.”
Survivors include his loving wife, Pearl; three sons: Michael (Judy) Nelson, Kevin Nelson, and Clay (Marilyn) Nelson; one daughter, Alice (Chuck) Richter; grandchildren: Kevin Nelson Jr. (Amanda), Michelle Hengestad, James and Susan Richter, Tanya (Chad) Fury, and Trisha and Tasha Nelson; nine great-grandchildren; many nieces and nephews; great-nieces and -nephews; and one cousin, Mavis (Wayne) Hanson.
Vernon was preceded in death by his parents: Fred and Carrie Nelson; brothers: Clayton, Morris, Ernest, and Harlan; and sister, Grace Anderson.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to St. James Catholic Church Handicap Accessible Fund, P.O. Box 362, Twin Lakes, MN 56089.