Jane Nelson, 97, of Fargo, ND, died at Bethany on University, Sunday, February 9th, 2020.
Aloy “Jane” Nelson was born to Seymour and Clara (Hetland) Mortrude on January 9th, 1923 in Rosby, MN. After graduating from Minot high school she had plans to attend Minot State Teacher’s College, but her father was killed in a boiler accident and the family was moved to Greenbush, MN. Jane’s mother started the M & Q Café and Jane stayed home to help in the café and to help raise and educate her three younger brothers.
In 1942 she moved to Santa Monica, CA to work in a defense plant for two years. It was there, after having to pass security clearance, that she was accused of being a spy. The family later learned that her birth certificate had been altered by her grandfather. He didn’t think Aloy (a mixture of metals) was a proper name for a girl, so he crossed out “Aloy” and wrote in “Betty” without telling anyone. This of course made for a great family story! While in California she loved dancing to Tommy Dorsey’s Swing Band and all the Big Band era greats down by the pier, often describing this as “the time of her life.”
She returned to Grand Forks, ND for training in telegraphy and worked briefly for the railroad in Appleton, MN. She returned to Grand Forks where she met her future husband at a luggage shop. After two weeks of dating they were engaged and she married Gordon Keith Nelson on June 27th, 1948 at Pauli Lutheran Church in Greenbush, MN. The couple lived in Grand Forks for one year and then moved to Lander, WY where Gordon worked to build a radio station. They lived briefly in Appleton, WI before finally moving to Fargo, ND in 1952 where she has resided ever since.
Jane was a stay at home mom and later worked for J. C. Penney’s as a sales associate for 18 years. She spent many years as a care giver for family members including her husband, who lived with Parkinson’s disease. Gordon died in 1985.
Jane was a devout member of Peace Lutheran Church and an avid reader. She traveled to visit her son’s family and especially enjoyed weekly talks with granddaughter Rachel. She loved attending her grandchildren Jonah and Hannah’s sporting and musical events from grade school through high school. And, she and Jan enjoyed their weekly shopping trips to J.C. Penney, lunch, more shopping and ending the day, with her Norwegian favorite, coffee and a cookie. She moved to Bethany Towers in 2016 and recently celebrated her 97th birthday! I guess she really did have the “metal”!
Jane is survived by her daughter Jan Nelson (Stan Andrist) of Fargo; daughter-in-law Norma Aamodt-Nelson of Mukilteo, WA; Grandchildren: Rachel (Mike) Stewart and great grandbaby Isaac Nelson Stewart of Seattle, WA; Jonah Andrist (Stacy Boyette) of Pocatello, ID; and Hannah Andrist (Monica Wolfe) of Seattle, WA. Brother-in-law, Wayne Nelson (Evie) of Sun City West, AZ, Sister-in-law’s: Mary Nelson of Bloomington, MN and Marcy Mortrude, St. Cloud, MN; and many cousins and nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her husband Gordon Nelson, her son Steven Gordon Nelson, brothers Seymour Mortrude, Dr. Gordon Mortrude (Thelma) and Dr. Lowell Mortrude.
A burial service is planned for spring in Greenbush, MN. We wish to thank the loving, caring staff at Bethany and Hospice of the Red River Valley. We also wish to give special thanks to Pastor Phil Hanson at Bethany for his ongoing support of our family.
Memorials may be given in memory of Jane Nelson to HeartSprings, 2010 N Elm St., Fargo, ND 58102
Arrangements entrusted to Boulger Funeral Home and Celebration of Life Center, Fargo.