Denise Marie Nelson, 59

Published 10:49 am Monday, November 25, 2013

Denise Marie Nelson, 59 of Lanesboro, formerly of Austin, passed away Friday, Nov. 22, 2013, at Saint Marys Hospital in Rochester.



Denise Marie Fournier was born April 21, 1954, in Minneapolis, to John ‘Jack’ and Janet “Jan” (Schoen) Fournier. After graduating from Totino Grace High School, Fridley, Minn., in 1972, Denise attended Dental Hygienist School in Minneapolis.  On Nov. 12, 1994, Denise and Donald A. Nelson were united in marriage in Austin, Minn. Most of her life she worked as a server in many local restaurants, including The Old Mill, Applebee’s, Tolly’s Time Out, and the Austin Country Club. Denise loved spending time with her nine grandchildren. She enjoyed animals and all wildlife, playing cards, shopping and entertaining. Denise was famous for her luck with pull tabs, and even more famous for her cooking. Some of her highly requested recipes were for her chicken salad, taco dip, caramel corn, banana bread, bars and seasoned pretzels. Among Denise’s favorite places was their home in Lanesboro, fondly called “The Shack,” and their home in Montgomery, Texas.

Since Denise’s diagnosis with ovarian cancer in 2007, she has displayed a zest for life like no other. The positive outlook and attitude was never-ending. She was blessed with many friends and always found ways to put everyone in her life before herself. Denise was an active member of M.O.C.A (MN Ovarian Cancer Assoc.), and Habitat for Humanity.

Email newsletter signup

Denise is survived by her husband, Donald A. Nelson of Lanesboro; son, Noel (Angela) Karl of Eden Prairie; daughters, Marisa West (formerly Marisa Karl) of Los Angeles, Heather (Scott) Berg (formerly Heather Nelson) of Medina, Minn., Nichole (Rob) Easthouse (formerly Nichole Nelson) of Rochester; sister, Cyndee (Scott) Iannazzo of Maple Grove, Minn.; nine grandchildren; parents, Jack and Jan Fournier of  Minneapolis; in-laws, Alfred “Cuffy” and Opal Nelson and brother-in-law, Dan (Deb) Nelson, all of Rochester. She was preceded in death by her grandparents; uncle and godfather, Tom Fournier, other uncles Jerry, Don, and Tom Schoen; aunt, Barb Murray, and her dog, Jake. Denise will be greatly missed by all who knew her.

A Memorial Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2013, at St. Augustine Catholic Church with Father Paul Nelson officiating.  Visitation will be held Tuesday, Nov. 26 from noon to 3 p.m. at Worlein Funeral Home in Austin. The family suggests that memorials be directed to the Hormel Institute in Austin, Minn., for cancer research. Condolences may be expressed to the family online at Denise’s family would like to thank Dr. Tatiana Ramirez Dominguez and the St. Marys nurses for their guidance and support.