Weather Forecast


Clara Nelson

July 4, 1920-June 29, 2009

Pelican Rapids native Clara L. Nelson, 88, of Perham, died Monday, June 29, 2009 at the Perham Memorial Hospital and Home.

Clara Lauretta Haugrud was born to Knute and Johanna (Sundstrom) Haugrud on July 4, 1920, on the Haugrud homestead farm north of Pelican Rapids. She attended a country school and graduated from Pelican Rapids High School in 1939. That fall she enrolled at the Lutheran Bible Institute in Minneapolis, and graduated from there in 1941.

While attending, LBI, Clara met Everett Nickolie Nelson of Belmond, Iowa. She and Everett were married on Aug. 30, 1942, at Grove Lake Lutheran Church. After Everett's graduation from Luther Seminary in 1945, they moved to Ephraim, Wis., where Everett served his first parish. They also lived in Seneca, Ill., Wessington, S.D., Kenyon, Minn., and Roland, Iowa.

Clara was active in many church organizations and ministries, including WELCA, bible studies, Sunday school, Vacation Bible School and church release time classes. Clara also enjoyed making church quilts and banners for many years. She worked as a nursing assistant at Bethany Manor in Story City, Iowa, and as a school cook in Roland, Iowa.

Clara loved to entertain, cook, and bake. She was also an accomplished seamstress.

Clara and Everett enjoyed retirement years at their lake home on West McDonald Lake in the Dent-Perham area, after moving there in 1984. Family gatherings were a highlight for them, and Clara especially liked preparing meals for her family.

Clara will be remembered fondly as a wonderful wife, mother, and grandmother. She dedicated her life to Christian values and faith and she was an inspiration to her family and friends.

Surviving Clara are her four children, Jonathan (Jill) Nelson of Hugo, Minn., Paul (Kathy) Nelson of Mason City, Iowa, Sharon (Daryl) Haarstick of Vergas and Mary (Dave) Thoresen of Lake Wales, Fla.; 10 grandchildren; four great grandchildren; two sisters, Linda Alsager and Mildred Robley; and two brothers, Milton Haugrud and Arlan (Delores) Haugrud.

Preceding Clara in death were her parents; loving husband, Everett; sister, Kathleen Haugrud; brother, James Haugrud; sisters-in-law, Velma Haugrud and Marlene Haugrud; and brothers-in-law, Delman Alsager and Douglas Robley.

Visitation will be held from 5 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, July 2 at Calvary Lutheran Church in Perham, followed with a 7:30 p.m. prayer service. It will continue for one hour prior to the start of services Friday at the church.

Funeral services are scheduled for 11 a.m. Friday, July 3, at Calvary Lutheran Church, with the Rev. Phil Holtan officiating. Burial will follow at Grove Lake Cemetery in Pelican Rapids.

Schoeneberger Funeral Home in Perham is in charge of the arrangements. Online tributes may be posted at