Virginia Nelson Profile Photo
1926 Virginia 2023

Virginia Nelson

July 16, 1926 — July 14, 2023


Hattie Virginia Nelson loving mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, sister, aunt, and friend, entered into eternal rest on July 14, 2023. Virginia was born on a farm near Odebolt, Iowa on July 16, 1926, to the late Gust J Johnson and Ruth Helen Victoria (Hanson) Johnson. Virginia was baptized and confirmed in the Evangelical Misson Covenant Church in Odebolt. Virginia enjoyed singing, which began at an early age singing duets & trios with her sisters. She always sang in the choir at the churches she attended and was active in small groups, Glee Club and choir in high school. She was the middle of 5 children, attended country school through the 8th grade, graduating from Odebolt High School in 1943. Her childhood years were filled with happy memories of life on the farm with her two brothers and two sisters. Following graduation, she taught country school. Her father died after a short illness in Feb of 1944, and Virginia and her siblings helped her mother transition from the farm to Odebolt. Later that year she moved to Omaha, Nebraska to attend Commercial Extension. While at school she worked at the Garden Cafeteria and later at Father Flanagan’s office. She graduated the following April and took a job with Kretschmer’s Camera Co. where she worked until the spring of 1948. Although she enjoyed her work in Omaha, she decided to return home to find another teaching position.

Virginia and her sister Elaine, went to Greeley, CO College of Education that summer to further their education. Elaine had previously met a young man from Greeley, Herb Duell, who helped arrange for housing for them with a couple he knew. Herb introduced Virginia to his best friend, Andy Nelson. The four of them spent time getting to know each other through the summer of 1949. The girls returned to Iowa that fall and took teaching positions. Herb and Andy visited them twice that fall. The girls went to Colorado to visit them at Christmas. At that time, Elaine received an engagement ring. At Elaine and Herb’s wedding in June 1950, Virginia received an engagement ring from Andy. After that wedding she spent the summer with Andy and his folks on their 80 acre farm near Galeton, CO and as a registrar at a Bible Camp near Estes Park, CO. Andy and Virginia were wed on Nov 24, 1950, in Odebolt, Iowa. (Best friends married sisters!) The couple returned to live and work in CO. To this union were born a son, Wesley Andrew Nelson, on Nov 25,1952 and a daughter, Beverly Gaye Nelson on July 26, 1955. In November of 1957 the family moved to Kiron, Iowa where they owned and operated Nelson Sundries Store until Jan 1972. During their time in Kiron they were actively involved in the community and First Baptist Church and served every way they could. After moving to Denison, Iowa they continued to be active in Calvary and Denison Baptist churches. They also attended Grace Church in Denison. Virginia loved God and she loved music and devoted herself to Bible study and shared her musical talents in many ways. She had a subtle but quick wit. She was kind, humble, very frugal, industrious, and caring for others.

While in Denison, Virginia worked 18 years as a medical transcriptionist at Crawford County Memorial Hospital until her retirement in 1991. In their retirement the couple enjoyed time with friends and family, especially the grandchildren. They also enjoyed traveling and visiting family across the country. Virginia was devoted and active in Christian Women’s Club for many years. She also ministered through Tele-Care calling weekly to homebound members of the community as a friend and advocate.

On October 15, 2010, her son Wesley was stricken at work in Louisville, CO and passed away suddenly at age 57. Virginia and Andy were shocked and deeply saddened by this sudden loss that impacted them for the rest of their lives.

In recent years, Virginia devoted herself to caring for Andy until his death on Feb 13, 2020. In June 2021 Virginia moved to Greenwood, Indiana to be near her daughter and family. She cherished her time with her grand and great grandchildren the past two years.

As she enters her Heavenly Home, she will be greeted by her parents, her husband of 69 years, Andy, her son Wesley, her brother Howard, and sister Helen. Those left to celebrate her life include daughter Beverly (Brent) Huldeen, sister Elaine Duell of Brentwood, TN, brother, Wayne (Marge) Johnson of Kenosha, WI, grandchildren Mitchell (Erin) Nelson of Lawton, IA, Sarah (Jerry) Rafferty of Trafalgar, IN, Philip (Suzi) Huldeen of Indianapolis, IN, Ruth (Philip) Jensen of Columbus, IN. Great grandchildren Brenna Nelson, Elias Strauss, Laney Nelson, Lucy Strauss, Roger Jensen, Micah Jensen, Elsie Huldeen, and Mack Rafferty. And many other family members and friends.

Visitation and viewing will be held at Mount Olive Lutheran Church Greenwood, IN on Saturday, July 22,2023 at 2:00PM with service to follow at 3:00PM. Casual and colorful attire is appropriate. Additional services and interment will be held in Iowa at a later date.

Memorial donations in Virginia's honor can be made to The Samaritan's Purse online at

or Mount Olive Lutheran Church online at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Virginia Nelson, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Saturday, July 22, 2023

2:00 - 3:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Funeral Service

Saturday, July 22, 2023

3:00 - 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

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