Ellen Irmgard Nelson, age 93, a 57-year resident of Manitowoc, WI passed away on Thursday, April 23, 2020 at Maritime Gardens in Manitowoc.
Ellen was born on January 30, 1927 in Park Ridge, IL to the late Paul J. and Elsie E. (Unterdoerfer) Becker. She began school at Darwin Elementary in the Logan Square area of Chicago where her father managed a hotel. In 1936 the family moved to the Northwoods of Wisconsin near Stone Lake where her parents owned and operated the Green Lantern tavern for several years, and Becker’s Court Oreilles Resort from the mid-1930’s until 1960. Following graduation from Hayward High School in 1944, she held Civil Service clerk-typist positions at Federal offices in Hayward, Madison, and Minneapolis. In 1947-1950 she studied a biomedical curriculum at University of Wisconsin, River Falls, while working as a typist for the local newspaper. There she met, and later married Gordon P. Nelson in 1950 and they resided in Rochester, MN for 3 years where Ellen was a technician in the Mycology lab of the Mayo Clinic. The couple moved to Ironwood, MI where they lived for ten years and their two children were born. Ellen worked as a transcriptionist for Grand View Hospital in Ironwood until 1956. The family moved to Manitowoc in 1963. Ellen worked for 18 years as a medical transcriptionist and records librarian for Holy Family Hospital/ Memorial and held similar positions for 6 years at two other healthcare facilities in the area. Her marriage to Gordon ended in 1992 but the two remained friends until Gordon’s death in 2007. She enjoyed spending time with her children and grandchildren, birdwatching, nature walks, visiting State and National Parks and wildlife refuges, country and lakeshore drives, rock hunting, gardening, fishing, vacationing with family and watching movies.
Ellen will be lovingly missed by her survivors including her children; Chester (Melissa) Nelson, Kirkland, WA; and Bobette (Bruce) Plendl of Everett, WA; grandchildren Gordon E. Nelson, Leocie Nelson and Craig (Candice) Plendl, and her many nieces and nephews. Ellen was preceded in death by her parents, Paul J and Elsie Becker, her brother Paul C. Becker, and former husband Gordon.
In respect of Ellen’s wishes, there will be no visitation or funeral service. Cremation has taken place at the Harrigan Parkside Crematory and Chapel with burial of Ellen’s remains planned for a later date at Greenwood Cemetery in Hayward, WI. Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.harriganparksidefuneralhome.com.
Persons wishing to make a memorial donation are requested to support the Lincoln Park Zoo in Manitowoc (www.manitowoc.org/766/Lincoln-Park-Zoo), or Woodland Dunes Nature Center (www.woodlanddunes.org).
The family would like to thank the owners and staff of Maritime Gardens for the nearly 6 years of care they gave to our precious Ellen, and to the staff of Heartland Hospice for their heartfelt end-of-life care.
The Harrigan Parkside Funeral Home and Crematory, North 11th and St. Clair streets, Manitowoc is assisting the family with arrangements.