Mary Elizabeth (Thele) Nelson

Class of 1939

1939 Graduation Edition
Perry Daily JournalMary Thele
Mary Thele

– daughter of Mr. and Mrs. L. W. Thele, of 111 Birch street, was a member of the Girl Reserves and the Home Economics club. She attended St. Joseph Academy and Perry High School. Mary was born in Perry in 1921 and has lived here since. She has worked for some time at McClellans Store.

Mary Elizabeth (Thele) Nelson

September 28, 1921 – February 24, 2009

Mary Elizabeth (Thele) Nelson, 87, of Perkins, our beloved mother, grandparent, sister, aunt and friend, died on Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2009, at her home in Perkins. A rosary will be held at 7 p.m. Sunday at Saint Francis Xavier Catholic Church. Mass of Christian burial will be at 10 a.m. Monday at Saint Francis Xavier Catholic Church with Father Kenneth J. Harder and Father Gary Kastl officiating. Interment will be in Glenwood Cemetery. Strode Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Mary was born on Sept. 28, 1921, at her parents’ home in Perry. She was one of 11 children born to Louis W. Thele and Mary Anna (Miksch) Thele. She grew up in Perry where she married Lee Roy Nelson of Perkins on March 25, 1940. They lived in and around the Perry/Perkins region before farming in the Hooker area for six years and Granada, Colo., for four years and then moved back to their Perkins farm. They started and maintained a dairy for approximately 18 years before selling the farm. Lee Roy preceded her in death on February 17, 1972.

Mary remained in the Perkins area while she worked at Oklahoma State University as a housekeeper for 20 years. Mary devoted her time and energy to family and church. Raising four children she was involved in all the associated activities such as 4-H club, class parents, band boosters, etc. She had a very generous heart, helping those in need by cooking meals, transporting to doctors appointments and church, or just visiting.

She was a member of the Saint Francis Xavier Altar Society and church council, serving as an officer in both. She was on the Glenwood Cemetery Association Board of directors, finished her husband’s term on the Perkins City Council, and was a member of the Stillwater Art Guild, Home Demonstration Club, and the Monday Stitch and Bitch Club. After all that she still had time for crocheting, painting, sewing, and quilting for her children and grandchildren.

Mary was preceded in death by her parents; husband; four brothers, Leo Thele (Molly), Edward Thele (Delores), Louis Thele, and James Thele; five sisters, Gertrude Chessmore (Francis), Frances Bohl (Harold), Catherine Stockinger (Wesley), Anna Tillman (Troy), and Dorothy Wells (Eli); two brothers-in-law, John Luetkemeyer and Verlin Nelson; and one sister-in-law, Georgia Nelson.

Mary is survived by one son, Charles Lee Nelson (Pat) of Floydada, Texas; three daughters, Stella Louise Hughes (Bill) of Perkins, Mary Jean Alexander of Springdale, Ark., and Dorothy Anne Lancaster (Clayton Lee) of Ada; 13 grandchildren, Kana Laymon (Wes) of Ruidoso, N.M., Tim Nelson (Leah) of Andrews, Texas, Tom Hughes of Seoul, South Korea, Dayna Dunn (Bryan) of Owasso, Caryn Krueger (Brad) of Guthrie, Penny VanEck (Tony) of Norman, Lisa Lancaster of Noble, Christy Gianino (Tony) of Noble, Jennifer Lancaster of Wichita Falls, Texas, Lee Allen Lancaster (Bridgette) of Perkins, Dawn Farris (Chris) of West Fork, Ark., Joe Alexander (Arvetta) of Springdale, Ark., and Nathan Alexander of Springdale, Ark.; 24 great grandchildren; two great great grandchildren; one sister, Regina Luetkemeyer of Oklahoma City; three sisters-in-law, Sally Thele of Glen Ellyn, Ill., Mary Claire Thele of Oklahoma City, and Florence Nelson Wall of Perkins; and one brother-in-law, Kenneth W. Nelson of Perkins.

Memorial contributions may be made in her name to Glenwood Cemetery Association, Perpetual Care Fund, 9918 S. Perkins Rd., Perkins, OK 74059; Saint Francis Xavier Catholic Church, Parish Hall Building Fund, P.O. Box 909, Stillwater, OK 74076; or Judith Karman Hospice, P.O. Box 818, Stillwater, OK 74076.