Jerry Nelson, 64, of Le Mars, died unexpectedly Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2006, at Floyd Valley Hospital in Le Mars.
Gerald Leo Nelson was born March 20, 1942 at Storm Lake, the son of Leo Ellven and Helen Lucille (Bottjen) Nelson. He was raised on a farm in the Galva area. Jerry was baptized and confirmed at St. Johns Lutheran Church in Galva. He graduated from Galva High School in 1960. Following graduation, Jerry attended Tech School in Omaha, Neb. He later went on to manage two different gas stations in the Sioux City area. In 1963 Jerry joined the Iowa National Guard.
On June 26, 1966 Jerry and Beverly Andresen were united in marriage at Trinity Lutheran Church in Akron. The couple made their home in Le Mars. Jerry began his career with Wilson Foods (now Tyson Foods) in Cherokee. He was inducted into the United States Army on May 13, 1968, during the Viet Nam War. He served as a heavy vehicle driver in Colorado Springs, Colo. Jerry received his honorable discharge on Oct. 2, 1969, having attained the rank of Specialist E5. He returned to Le Mars and continued his career with Wilson Foods. Soon after his return, Jerry attended night classes at the Sioux Empire College in Hawarden, earning his Associate Arts degree on May 31, 1976. On Nov. 4, 2005, Jerry retired after 39 years at Tyson Foods in Cherokee. Most recently after his retirement, Jerry has worked part time at Copper Leaf Golf Course in Merrill, Iowa.
Jerry was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Akron until 1986 when he became a member at St. John's Lutheran Church in Le Mars. He was active in both churches through the years where he served on Church Council, ushered, taught Sunday School and served on various committees. He was a member of Le Mars Sportsmans' Club, Skyhawks and Wings (remote control flying clubs) and Wasmer Post #241 of the American Legion. Jerry was very proud of his involvement on the Safety Committee for more than 30 years during his career at Tyson Foods. He was also a Cub Master of Pack 184 and Little League Baseball coach. Jerry's many other hobbies included hunting, fishing, golfing, woodworking, bowling and riding with his motorcycle buddies.
Most of all and foremost, Jerry was a devoted son, husband, father, grandfather and friend you could always count on. He was always willing to lend a helping hand.
Jerry will be lovingly remembered by his wife, of 40 years, Bev of Le Mars; a son Brian Nelson and his wife Jean of Logan, and their children Taylor and Brandon, and a son Curtis Nelson and his wife Naomi of Ames; his mother Helen Nelson of Correctionville; a brother Dale Nelson and his wife Joyce of Holstein; nephews Trevor Nelson and his wife Pam of Omaha, Neb., Tracy Nelson and his wife Julie of Salix, and Trent Nelson and his wife Gina of Rapid City, S.D.; and several other nieces, nephews and cousins.
He was preceded in death by his father Leo; a brother-in-law, Eli Andresen and his wife Donna; and father and mother-in-law Fred and Lena Andresen.
Funeral services will be at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at St. John's Lutheran Church in Le Mars. The Rev. Gary Landsness and the Rev. Greg Gabriel will officiate. Burial will follow at Memorial Cemetery in Le Mars with Wasmer Post #241 of the American Legion providing military honors. Visitation will begin at 2 p.m. Friday at the Mauer - Johnson Funeral Home of Le Mars, with a prayer service at 7 p.m. There will also be one hour of visitation at the church prior to the funeral service on Saturday.
Expressions of sympathy may be directed through www.mauerjohnsonfh.com.