Sundell / Munising
William “Bill” Nelson, age 83, of Munising and formerly of Sundell, died Friday, June 22, 2018 at his home under the loving care of his family. He was born on April 24, 1935 on the family farm in Rumely to Richard and Sylvia (Aho) Nelson. Bill grew up in Rumely and began working on the farm at a young age. During his youth, he developed a love for fishing. Bill married Virginia “Jenny” Spearman on November 26, 1954 and together they raised their five children. Bill worked at the Mather B. Mine in Negaunee and later at the Empire Mine as a heavy equipment operator for many years. During times of layoffs, he would work road construction across the United States including a major project at Chicago O’Hare International Airport. He enjoyed taking trips to the New Moon and dancing on the weekends, and his daily trips to open the Eben Snack Bar to visit with friends. Bill loved the outdoors. He enjoyed touring the trails of the U.P. on his four wheeler and snowmobile. Bill loved fishing on the Big Lake and took many hunting trips to Wyoming and Idaho, but he especially enjoyed his ten trips to Alaska where he would not only hunt and fish, but be able visit with his son. At the age of 80, Bill took his four wheeler to Kentucky so he could say he rode in the Appalachian Mountains. Bill enjoyed life and always had a goofy sense of humor. He had an infectious smile and even when he was hurting in rehab after his stroke, Bill never quit smiling. He was proud to say he completed everything on his bucket list.
Bill is survived by his five children – Vickie Nelson of Munising, Christine (Jim) Westphal of Munising, Connie (Brian) Thompson of Munising, Bill (Susan) Nelson of Larsen Bay, Alaska, and Duayne (Marcia) Nelson of Eben Junction; 12 grandchildren; 21 great-grandchildren; 1 great-great grandson; brothers – Richard “Bing” (Mary) Nelson of Sundell and Bob (Joyce) Nelson of AuTrain; sisters – Rita LeMaire of Sundell and Marina Krajewski of Wisconsin; sister-in-law – Carolyn Nelson; and numerous nieces and nephews. Bill was preceded in death by his parents; wife - Jenny Nelson; special friend - Bonnie Barnett; siblings - Patsy Nelson, Sharon (Herb) Burdick, and Edwin Nelson; and brothers-in-law – Rod LeMaire and Frank Krajewski.
Visitation will be on Wednesday, June 27, 2018 at the Bowerman Funeral Home from 11:00 a.m. until 12:00 noon. A memorial service will begin at 12:00 noon with Martha Inman as the celebrant. Following the service, interment will be at Pine Grove Cemetery in Chatham with a luncheon to follow at the New Moon in Eben.