Cover photo for Rose Mary & Alvin L. Nelson's Obituary
Rose Mary & Alvin L. Nelson Profile Photo
1918 Rose 2018

Rose Mary & Alvin L. Nelson

November 30, 1918 — April 1, 2018

Alvin L. Nelson and Rose Mary Nelson

Rose Mary Nelson passed away on April 9, 2018 a few months after her 99th birthday at her home in Boulder.  She was preceded in death by her husband Alvin Lester Nelson.  Married in 1941, they were together for 67 years until his death in 2009.

Rose Mary was born in Doniphan County, Kansas in 1919.  One of 11 children, she lived on a farm and was raised during the Great Depression.  She outlived all of her siblings to become the matriarch of the Drake family. She earned an associates degree and taught in a one-room schoolhouse before marrying Alvin, just before he left for the war at which time she moved to Greeley and then Denver, where she lived with his parents.  They raised their family in the Cherry Creek area of Denver.  They moved to Aurora in the early 1980s and then Boulder in 2005.  After the children left home she studied painting and became an accomplished watercolorist, whose works hang in the homes of many friends and relations. She was a sweet lady, who imbued her family and friends with her values of kindness and generosity.

Alvin was born two days before Rose Mary in Moray, KS.  At age 12 he bought a junked Model T Ford and restored it to running condition.  He met Rose Mary when he became friends with her brother.  They were married on the eve of his departure for the war.  He served in the motor pool for the 154th Field Artillery Battalion in Alaska during the Aleutian Campaign.  Later he worked for the Rural Electrification Association while earning a degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Denver.  He then worked for Stearns Rogers until retirement.  Alvin loved to build things and, with his cousin Loren, built the house where he and Rose Mary raised their family.  They took the kids camping all over the West in a pop-up trailer he also built.  He passed his integrity and love of crafts to all of his children.

Rose Mary and Alvin never completely left the farm.  They were avid gardeners their entire lives, and together canned and froze their produce for the winter.

Alvin and Rose Mary are survived by their four children, Alvin D. Nelson of Longmont, CO., David L. Nelson (wife, Laurie Watkins) of Boulder, CO, Christina Nelson of Olympia, WA (husband, Keith Phillips), and Patricia Wood of Melbourne Beach, FL (husband, James Wood).  They are also survived by six grandchildren, Ian Phillips, Kirsten Phillips, Dana Nelson, Arne Phillips, Kelsey Wood and Trent Wood.

These two fine people will be greatly missed by their family and anyone who knew them.

A private family graveside service will be held on April 27.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Rose Mary & Alvin L. Nelson, please visit our flower store.


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