Norma Jean Nelson

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Norma Jean (Lamphier) Nelson was born in her family home on February 12, 1937, to Willis and Nellie (Landis) Lamphier. Norma grew up in Elkader attending school and graduating from Elkader High School. She married Eugene Troester on June 29, 1955, at the First Congregational Church in Elkader. Four children were born to this union. They later divorced. 

Through the years, Norma cooked and managed several different restaurants, did factory work, worked as a certified nurse’s aide at the Elkader Care Center; but caring for her family was her biggest concern. Her greatest joy in life was watching her children and grandchildren grow. She also baked thousands of delicious pies and shared her love of baking with anyone and everyone that walked past her door.

She married Neil Nelson in July 27, 1985, at Norway Lutheran Church, rural St. Olaf. When Neil and Norma married, Norma’s stepdaughters, Nola, Nina (Ron) and stepson LeRoy (Dee) became her children, making her the mother of seven. Norma had many health conditions that restricted her from working later in life, but it never stopped her from baking. Following Neil’s passing on September 27, 2009, Norma and Debbie moved to an apartment in Elkader where they met many new friends and some old ones. The family would like to say Thanks you to Ike and Benny for their dedication in helping her with groceries and stopping in just to say hello.

Survivors include her children, Debbie Troester of Elkader, Virginia (Rick) Shefelbine of Garnavillo, Alan Troester (special friend, Bobbi Wilson) of Guttenberg, Calvin (Angela) Troester of Earlville; stepchildren Nina (Ron) Taylor of Decorah and LeRoy (Dee) Nelson of St. Olaf; eight grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; six stepgrandchildren; twelve step-great-grandchildren and brother-in-law, Kenny Lemka of Elkader.

Norma was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Neil; ex-husband, Eugene; two sisters, WillaDean Kaiser and Kay Lemka; brother, LeRoy Lyman; step daughter, Nola Blake; half brother, Leonard Popenhagen and one nephew, Keith Lemka.

Funeral services were held at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, September 23, 2015, at Norway Lutheran Church, rural St. Olaf. Burial followed at Norway Lutheran Cemetery. Visitation was from  4 to 8 p.m.Tuesday, September 22, 2015, at Leonard Funeral Home in Elkader and one hour before service time at the church on Wednesday.

Leonard Funeral Home and Cremation Service of Elkader is assisting the family. Online condolences may be left with www.leonardfuneralhomes.com

 
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