By HDN staff
JOPLIN -- Emil John "Jack" Nelson, 69, died Wednesday, Nov. 10, 1999, at a Great Falls hospital from complications of an abdominal aortic aneurysm.
Funeral services will be held 11 a.m. Saturday at the Bethel Lutheran Church in Joplin. Burial will follow in the Joplin Cemetery.
Nelson was born Jan. 16, 1930, at Havre, to Emil and Ina Ruth (McKay) Nelson. He grew up on the family farm north of Joplin. His early education was at the Tingdal Country School. He also attended school at Darby and Florence and graduated from Joplin High School in 1947. He continued his education at MSU in Bozeman until enlisting in the U.S. Air Force where he served during the Korean Conflict in Guam. He worked as an airplane radio repairman. Following his honorable discharge he returned to Montana and continued his schooling at MSU, earning his bachelor's degree in agriculture engineering.
He worked at the S.C.S. office in Conrad for a few years before joining his father in the farming and ranching business in Columbia Falls. He lived and worked in the Flathead Valley for 10 years before moving to Lacey, Wash., to work in construction.
On Dec. 26, 1969, he married Doris James Nelson. The couple moved to Joplin where he owned and operated the Big Sky Husky service station for several years. The couple resided in Joplin for the last 30 years.
Nelson was an active member in the Bethel Lutheran Church in Joplin, serving on the church council for many years. He was also active in the Lutheran Brotherhood, the Joplin Masonic Lodge, the Joplin Commercial Club and the Chester American Legion. He served on the Joplin Memorial Park Board, volunteered as a Joplin fireman and was past member of the Liberty Leaners Horseshoe Club. He was once awarded a Red Cross Merit of Honor for saving a man's life. He enjoyed vegetable gardening, family gatherings and playing cards, especially pinochle and whist. He also enjoyed hunting, fishing, bowling, reading, and traveling.
He was preceded in death by his parents and a brother, Fred.
Survivors include his wife, Doris of Joplin; sons, Kenneth of Chinook, Larry of Chester and Tracy of Joplin; daughters, Rhonda Nelson of Kirkland, Wash., Lonna Linnell of Spokane, Wash., and Jennifer Nelson of San Francisco; 10 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.
Arrangements are by Rockman Funeral Chapel of Chester.