Richard C. Nelson \n Richard Conrad Nelson, age 84, passed away Friday, February 19, 2010 at Syverson Lutheran Home in Eau Claire, Wisconsin after a long illness. \n He was born August 4, 1925 in Menomonie, Wisconsin to Christ and Gladys Nelson and graduated from Menomonie High School in 1944, the same year he married Shirley Jean Husby. After Shirley's death, he married Bonnie Nelson in 1985. He lived in Menomonie his entire life other than during his army years (1944-1946) when he served in Japan and Okinawa. He was employed by American Materials in Eau Claire as a Heavy Equipment Operator and was a member of Operating Engineers' Local 139. He loved the outdoors and particularly liked to see it from the window of one of his classic cars (he was a member of the Red Cedar Classic Car Club for over 30 years) or from a small aircraft (he became a licensed pilot in the 1960s). He was a member of the Experimental Aircraft Association and looked forward to the EAA's AirVenture at Oshkosh each year. He also enjoyed RVing and camping at Chippewa Bottoms and was a lifelong member of Our Savior's Lutheran Church. \n Richard is survived by his wife Bonnie Nelson; his son, Kris (Becky) Nelson, and daughter, Pam (Ron) Johnson, as well as his stepdaughters, Rhonda (Tony) Brock-Servais, Donnette (Rick) Steinberger, and Julie Lail; his grandchildren Greg (Robin) Gynnild, Sara (Josh) Hansen, Michelle (Dirk) Van Onselder, Brandon (Christina) Donley, Ami (Bill) Suchan, Anne (Matt) Priester, Ross Nelson, Matthew, Lauryn, Megan, and Hannah Steinberger, and Devon Buckley, as well as thirteen great-grandchildren. Richard is also survived by his sister, Phyllis Kraft; sister-in-law, Judy Nelson; cousins, nieces, nephews, and many, many friends in addition to his beloved pet Pomeranian, Lacey. \n \n He was preceded in death by his wife, Shirley Jean Nelson, their infant daughter Peggy Jo Nelson, and daughter, Connie Gynnild; his grandson Troy Donley; brother, Donald Nelson, and brother-in-law, Charlie Kraft. \n \n Visitation will be held at Olson's Funeral Home in Menomonie from 5-8 pm on Tuesday, the 23rd of February, 2010. Funeral services will be at Our Savior's Lutheran Church at 11:00 am on Wednesday, the 24th. \n \n Many people are owed thanks for their care and concern for Richard including the staff at Syverson Lutheran Home and Dr. William Maierhofer. A special thank you goes to Northwest Wisconsin Home Care. \n \n Richard was a man who loved animals and the outdoors. Like his idol Richard Proenneke, author of One Man's Wilderness, he was a man of physical stamina and wisdom, a straight-forward, matter-of-fact man. Yet, he was not without whimsy and joy; he shared the occasional ice cream cone with his dogs and was even known to cook a breakfast for them. The EAA memorializes its members with this line: "Gone West: Not alone into the sunset but into the company of friends who have gone before." Goodbye Richard, your family and friends that remain will look to the west and fondly remember.