Marie B. Nelson, affectionately called “Grandma Ree”
Beloved wife, mother, grandmother, and great grandmother, died Saturday, September 11, 2021, after a long battle with Alzheimer’s at the age of 95. She was born on a farm in rural Minnesota where she grew up with her first generation German parents and 11 siblings. She often told her own children stories about her childhood, especially when her children complained about something…she had to walk miles to school each day…in the snow….
During WWII, she rationed and sold tires; and at age 24, moved with her husband “Bud” and her two children to St. Petersburg, Fl. Her passion was always styling hair. Even as a child, she would braid her sisters’ hair and later when she had her own daughter, her focused attention turned a child with poker straight hair into a Shirley Temple look-a-like using permanent applications. Her daughter (me) still cringes with the remembrance of that permanent smell. Although she only completed the 10th grade, she went to beauty school and then opened her own beauty shop, called “The Beauty Shop” in St. Petersburg. After retirement, gardening became her passion, turning her backyard into a park-like setting.
She was an excellent cook and Sunday dinners and holidays were always spent at Grandma’s house. She made the best roast beef, mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans, peas, and fruit salad…good ole Minnesota farm food. Christmas was her favorite holiday and family traveled long distances so we could all gather together for the big event. All of us remember walking downstairs on Christmas morning to see the living room floor covered with presents and then the traditional breakfast of egg casserole and bacon. On Easter, she always had an Easter egg hunt where even the adults were incentivized to find the eggs that she had prepared especially for them. She loved music, especially Willie Nelson. Oh yes, she also yodeled and as soon as people found out about this unique talent, she was repeatedly asked until she gave them a sample. She excelled in anything she put her mind to, from sewing to craft making; but what she loved the most was swing dancing with the love of her life, Bud.
Thank you mom, grandma. for leaving us with such great memories. Marie was preceded in death by her husband, Bud, and her son, Danny. She is survived by her daughter Nancy Goodyear and sons Ralph “Nick” Nelson and wife Alvina “Mae”, and Randy Nelson; Grandchildren Shannon Hopper, Kristen Knight and husband Troy, Kris Nelson and wife Tiffany, and Jessica Nelson; Great grandchildren Drake Hopper, Brent Hopper, Tyler Knight, Caden Knight, and Kristalyn Nelson.
Graveside Services will be private and for immediate family only.
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