January 6, 1924 –
January 3, 2016
Rudolph Nelson, Scarville, passed away Sunday, Jan. 3, 2016, at St. Mary’s Hospital, Rochester, Minn. He was three days from his 92nd birthday. Funeral services were held Friday, Jan. 8, at Immanuel Lutheran Church, Scarville, with Pastor Randy Baldwin officiating.Military Honors were performed by Lake Mills Otto/Chose American Legion Post #235. Burial was held in Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery. Mittelstadt Funeral Home, Lake Mills, was in charge of arrangements.
Rudolph (Rudy or Dede) was born in Scarville, Jan. 6, 1924, to his parents, Miler and Myrtle. He graduated from Scarville High School in 1941 and went on to attend Waldorf College, prior to enlisting in the Army and serving in World War II in 1943.
In WWII, Rudolph served in Europe with the 103rd Infantry Division (Cactus Division), which fought in several battles, including the Battle of the Bulge, as part of the Rhineland Central Europe Campaign. During this time, Rudolph independently learned German and became an interpreter in the war. For his service, he received the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with two Bronze Battle Stars and the Expert Marksmanship and Combat Infantryman Badge.
Upon returning from the war, he continued his education, receiving an associate degree from Waldorf in 1947, a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from the University of Iowa in 1950, and master’s degree in political science from the University of Iowa in 1951. During this time he married Helen Arlene Twito in the fall of 1948.
In 1951, he began employment at the Hormel Foods Corporation, Austin, Minn., where he held several positions until his retirement in 1989 as a corporate purchasing executive.
Throughout his life, Rudolph was an active member in the community. He was a scout leader, a pilot, a Mason, a Shriner, a Flying Shriner, a Y’s Men, a Legion member, an Austin City Council member, the St. Olaf Church President, an Elk’s Club member, and a member of the Sons of Norway.
To those who knew him, and to those he just met, he radiated irrepressible wit, humor, and kindness.
He is survived by his wife, Helen Arlene; his two daughters: Deborah and Cynthia; brother and sister-in-law, KarLyle and Lois Nelson; son-in-law, Ryoji Tsuruta; grandchildren: Akane, Kai, and Koh Tsuruta; niece, Ann Hinman and her family; and an untold number of friends, who will miss him dearly.
Rudolph was preceded in death by his parents, Miler and Myrtle; and sister, LuVerna Kingland.