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Robert Nelson

March 26, 1933 — September 26, 2023

Robert Nelson

Robert “Bob” Nelson, 90, died Tuesday, September 26, 2023, at Allen Place in Atlantic, Iowa.

Robert Lyle Nelson was born March 26, 1933, on an acreage just north of Atlantic to Laurence and Irene (Moller) Nelson.  Growing up on a farm he learned a great deal about what it took to work hard, earn a living and how to take care of the world around him.  He carried these values throughout his life.  After meeting a young lady from the Buck Creek area who rode the bus to school with Bob, on August 23, 1953, he married Frances E. Karstensen at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church.  They made their home north of Atlantic and were blessed with three children.

As a young man, Bob defended his country during the Korean Conflict and was sent to Grafenwöhr, Germany.  Together, Bob and Frances enjoyed their two years in Europe as they traveled to numerous surrounding countries by motorcycle.  They would later make excursions to Acapulco, Mexico, cruise to Alaska and make many memorable trips to Colorado to see family and friends. 

Upon Bob’s return from Europe, he and Frances set their sights on farming back in their old “stomping grounds,” just north of Atlantic.  He answered God’s calling for him to live a life as a farmer; he bought some cattle, a red IH tractor and began farming just as his father had taught him.  All of that and raising a family kept Bob busy most days and nights but he somehow found time for the Cass County Fair Board, Elks Lodge events, the American Legion, 4-H, Greenridge Steam Show, volunteering at the Museum of Danish America in Elk Horn, and being part of the VFW Honor flight in 2014.  When Bob had spare time with his family, they spent much of it fishing, hunting, woodworking and inventing ways to make farming easier.  They all rode the “Nelly Bell” go cart around the farm and loved to just sit together on their porch while he played the accordion.  He performed with “Wes Haines and the Melodies” Polka band during his middle years playing piano, accordion and chord organ.  Bob was an expert target shooter and gunsmith, in his own right.    

As a “Sawyer of Good Repute,” he and Frances cared deeply about their land, livestock and sought to be good stewards of the natural elements of their farm and maintain them.  Bob was able to get through the bumps and bruises—and a few other more serious injuries, but he knew that there would be ups and downs in life.  In the end, he felt everything would be alright if he just stayed focused on providing for his family and a place they could call home, which he did admirably. 

He was a friend to everybody, stranger to none.  Bob’s physical strength was like a rock and a force that one quickly learned was more of a humble, generous and loving support that could be depended on when in need.  As a father, he was a never-ending encouragement to their lives and their independence.  He was always there for his family and friends no matter what the situation or need.  

Bob is survived by his son, Steven R. (Tammie) Nelson of Marne; daughters, Sandy Sothman of Atlantic and Shellie (Rob) Anderson of St. Peters, MO; grandchildren, Caleb (Kilee) Nelson of Greenfield, Luke Nelson of Creston, Hannah Nelson and significant other, Caleb Affuso of Denver, CO, Sara (Nate) Jensen of Huxley, Abby (Colby) Spann of Des Moines, Zach Anderson and significant other, Courtney Chapman, of Maplewood, MO and Josh (Megan) Anderson of Cottleville, MO; brother, Dale Nelson of Ankeny; sister-in-law, Ethel Sturdevant of Grimes; and nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. 

He is preceded in death by his wife, Frances (Karstensen) Nelson; parents; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Holger and Esther (Bishop) Karstensen; sister, Vera (Mac) McDermott, brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Fred Sturdevant and Peggy Nelson; and niece, Elaine Teague.

A visitation with family present will be held on Saturday, September 30th beginning at 9:30 a.m. at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Atlantic.  Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. immediately following the visitation, with Pastor Lauri Boysen officiating.  Following the service, all are invited to attend a luncheon in the fellowship hall of St. Paul’s.  A private family burial will be held at the Atlantic Cemetery with full military rites provided by the Atlantic Color Guard.

Memorials may be made to the family for later designation. 

Roland Funeral Service is caring for Bob’s family and his arrangements.  Condolences may be left at www.rolandfuneralservice.com.

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

Past Services

Visitation

Saturday, September 30, 2023

9:30 - 10:30 am

Atlantic St. Paul's Lutheran Church

1011 E 13th St, Atlantic, IA 50022

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Funeral Service

Saturday, September 30, 2023

Starts at 10:30 am

Atlantic St. Paul's Lutheran Church

1011 E 13th St, Atlantic, IA 50022

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Private Family Burial

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