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Howard L. Nelson

Funeral services for Howard L. Nelson of Barrett will be held Thursday, Feb. 5, 2009 at 2 PM at the Pedersen Funeral Home in Morris. Reverend Judy Gelinske will be officiating. Visitation will be held Wednesday from 5 to 8 PM with a prayer service at 7:30 at the Pedersen Funeral Home in Morris and for one hour prior to services on Thursday. Burial will be at Summit Cemetery. Military rites will be provided by the Morris American Legion, VFW and AmVets.

Howard L. Nelson, son of Chris and Rose (Henriksen) Nelson, was born July 23, 1927 near Donnelly, where he grew up on the family farm. He attended country school and worked at home on the farm, until he was drafted into the United States Army on Jan. 25, 1951. Howard began his training at Camp McCoy near Sparta, Wis. and then went on to Albuquerque, N.M., where he worked with the Atomic Energy Commission during the Korean War. Howard later transferred to LaCrosse, Wis., where he continued serving as an MP (military police). On Sept. 20, 1952, he was united in marriage to Margaret "Marge" Kleinhaus. Following their marriage, the couple moved to North Carolina, where Howard finished his service in the army at Ft. Bragg. On January 24, 1953, he received an honorable discharge with a superior rating. Following his discharge, the couple moved to Morris, where Howard worked doing custom baling. After a short time, they moved to a farm in rural Stevens County, where they were blessed with three children: Steven, Barbara and Wayne. Howard then moved his family to a farm near Herman, where they only stayed for a short time and then moved to a farm near Eagle Bend, where Howard continued to farm. In 1963, the family moved near Hoffman, where they lived on Elk Lake and Howard worked construction as a union carpenter. In 1971, Howard and his family moved to a farm 5 miles east of Barrett, where he milked dairy cattle and farmed. Howard and Marge continued to live on the farm near Barrett until the time of Howard's death.

Howard enjoyed many things during his 81 years, the most of which was spending time with his family, especially his grandchildren and great-grandson, who referred to him as "Papa". Howard enjoyed farming, hunting, snowmobiling and training his border collies to herd cattle. Howard was blessed to have family near him and spend time with him. Howard's most recent joy was the birth of his great-grandson, Maxwell Patrick Nelson. Howard and Marge would see Max frequently and would even baby sit. Howard loved to have his "little side kick, Shorty" by his side. Howard would take Max for rides on the golf cart during the summer and in the winter months they would sit and read all of Max's favorite books together. Howard prided himself on his family, he was proud of his three children, his two grandchildren and his great-grandson. He was proud of all of their accomplishments. "You start and end with family." Author unknown.

Howard died on Monday, Feb. 2, 2009 at the Douglas County Hospital in Alexandria, having lived to reach the age of 81 years. Howard had been battling cancer for the past 10 years.

He is survived by his wife: Marge Nelson of Barrett; children: Steven (Sue) Nelson of Donnelly, Barbara (Dennis) Michels of Yankton, S.D. and Wayne Nelson of Barrett; grandchildren: Ryan Tacke and Amber (Patrick) Nelson; great-grandson: Maxwell Nelson; step-grandchildren: Joshua Michels, Emily Michels, Richard (Kathy) McLaughlin, Michael (Jennifer) McLaughlin, Tom McLaughlin, Brian (Ann) Erdahl, Josh Erdahl and Aaron (Kayla) Erdahl; brothers: Leslie (Selma) Nelson of Alberta, Leonard (Judy) Nelson of Morris and Paul (Arline) Nelson of Donnelly and sisters: Harriet Anderson of Morris and Carol (Maynard) Thorstad of Hoffman. He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers: infant Glenn Nelson, Merton Nelson and Raymond Nelson and sisters: Gladys Madison, Irene Thorstad and Fern Bruer.

Pallbearers for the service are: Royal Lawson, Wayne DeClercq, Warren Karlstad, Norman Gulbrandson, Steve Staples and Wendell England. Honorary pallbearers are all who called him friend. Bonnie Gulbrandson will serve as organist for the service with Greg Sperr serving as soloist. Pedersen Funeral Home in Morris is in charge of the arrangements.