Alfred Asher “Al” Nelson, 82, of Chase Street in Claremont, NH, died Thursday (April 25, 2019) at the Nathan Adelson Hospice in Las Vegas, NV, after a brief period of failing health.
He was born in Claremont, NH, on February 8, 1937, the son of Thomas J. and Martha E. (Davis) Nelson and had been a lifetime Claremont resident. “Al” attended North St. School and graduated from Stevens High School, Class of 1957. While at Stevens he participated on both the track and football teams both of which he was very proud of and often shared stories of his high school days. “Al” joined the National Guard while still in high school and in 1958 he enlisted in the US Air Force. He was stationed at Castle Air Force Base in California for 2 years and Elmendorf Air Force Base in Alaska, where he maintained survival kits for planes. While in Alaska he was stationed with one of his favorite cousins, Henry Courtemanche. He was very proud of his service and loved shared stories of his military experiences.
In his younger years “Al” enjoyed playing soccer, basketball and skiing. In 1962 “Al” worked as a machine operator at Claremont Woven Label, He then became employed at Bryant Computer Products in Springfield, VT. He then worked for VT Research for 5 years. “Al” then began his 32-year career at Sturm Ruger, retiring in 2005. On October 12, 1968 he married the former Linda Ann Pratt at St. Mary’s Church in Claremont; they had recently celebrated 50 years of marriage. He was a life member of the Claremont Moose Lodge where he and Linda enjoyed many Saturday nights dancing with the “Rowdy Bunch”. He was also a life member of American Legion Post 29 where he served as a member of the Funeral Honors Honor Guard.
“Al” was a good husband, father and grandfather. He was so proud of his children and granddaughters. He and his son Mark were in “Indian Guides” together when Mark was young. While Elizabeth took dance lessons at Jenkins, he never missed her recitals. He also was proud to attend all of their school functions, events and graduations. He later went on to attend his granddaughters’ special events with great pride and pleasure. He was a fan of the Boston Red Sox and New England Patriots. He also enjoyed watching westerns, listening to Elvis Presley, Patsy Kline and other 50’s music. He was always a kind, gentle and generous man with a great sense of humor. One of his biggest joys was handing out dollar bills to little children after getting their parents’ permission to encourage them to save money in their piggy banks. “Al” always liked a good steak, good cigar and an occasional glass of Crown Royal.
Members of his family include his wife, Linda Ann Nelson, Claremont, NH; a son, Mark A. Nelson and his partner, Diana Van Alstyne, Keene, NH; a daughter, Elizabeth S. DeCelle and her husband, Richard A., Newport, NH; two grandchildren, Allyson E. DeCelle, Bethany R. DeCelle, a niece, Wendy J. Harrison, Deland, FL; nephews, Thomas N. Harrison and his wife Kimberly, and their sons, Gunnar and Kenton, Glenwood, FL; Paul K. Harrison, Andover, NH and many cousins that he was very close to and were special to him.
He was predeceased by his parents, an infant son, Preston A. Nelson, a sister, Marjorie A. Harrison and her husband Paul S., Deland, FL.
A Memorial service will be held at 1:00 pm on Saturday, June 1, at the Roy Funeral Home with the Rev. Deacon Paul Boucher, officiating. Committal with military honors will follow in Union Cemetery. Friends may call at the funeral home on Friday (May 31) from 6 – 8 PM.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that memorial contributions be made to the Nathan Adelson Hospice, 4141 Swenson St., Las Vegas, NV 89119, Lake Sunapee VNA/Hospice, 107 Newport Road, New London, NH 03257 or Stevens High School Scholarship Fund, 175 Broad Street, Claremont, NH 03743.
You are invited to share a memory of “Al” with the family or leave a message of condolence in the family guest book at www.royfuneralhome.com. The family also invites you to bring a written memory of “Al” to the services so that they may compile a book of remembrance.
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