William 'Bill' Nelson
Nelson, William "Bill" age 92, of Bloomington, MN passed away peacefully on Sunday, September 10, 2023. He was preceded in death by his wife, Gerd (Berntsen) Nelson and his parents, William F. Nelson and Myrtle (Olsvig) Nelson. He is survived by his son, Erik (Maggie) Nelson, of Stavanger, Norway; granddaughters Andrea Idso Nelson (Hill Mugisha) of Edina, MN, Vibeke Idso (Nelson) Nierenhausen (Jack) of Bloomington, MN, and Emma Nelson of Stavanger, Norway, and great-grandson, Magnus F. Nierenhausen of Bloomington, MN. Other survivors include his sisters, Janet A. Field and Cheryl L. Murphy, brother, Fredrick L. Nelson, and many nieces, nephews and cousins. Bill was born on October 1, 1930, in Rice Lake, WI. Later, his family moved to Eau Claire, WI. He earned a degree in business from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. It was there that he met the love of his life, Gerd Berntsen, while travelling through the revolving doors of the Student Union. They were married in Oslo, Norway in 1960 and made their home in Bloomington, MN. During the Korean War, Bill served in the US Navy from his station in New Port, RI. The majority of his life, he worked as a Realtor. Bill embodied a strong sense of Norwegian identity - more than many natives of Norway. He championed the Norway of his heritage and its values. Together, with Aage Reffsgaard, he founded Saga Klubben in the early 1970s, a torske luncheon and fellowship club for Scandinavians. He was proud of his heritage and, throughout his life, Bill played significant roles in promoting Norwegian interests and culture in the United States. He traveled to Norway frequently visiting family and nurturing his love of the country and his heritage. Bill was a wonderful father, grandfather, great-grandfather, husband, and brother -- a friendly, outgoing, caring, light-hearted, sincere, and enjoyable man. He always had a story to tell for any occasion or to get the party started. His family and friends in the US and in Norway will miss him dearly. Takk for alt, på gjensyn! The family extends heartfelt gratitude to the exceptional personnel at Aurora on France and Fairview Hospital for their compassionate care, and to Bill's best friend at Aurora, Chuck Nordland, MD. All exemplified the spirit and caring of a dedicated Norwegian team! A Memorial Service for Bill will be held at the Norwegian American Memorial Church (Mindekirken), 924 E 21st Street, Minneapolis, MN 55404 on Thursday, September 28, 10AM Visitation, 11AM Service. A Memorial Service and interment will be held at Vestre Gravlund, Sørkedalsveien 66, 0369 Oslo, Norway at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please consider a gift to Mindekirken Church or a memorial of your own choosing.
Published on September 24, 2023
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