Phyllis Nelsen

Phyllis Jean Nelsen,  91,  of Springfield, died Thursday, Dec. 27, 2018, at St. John Lutheran Home in Springfield.

 Visitation will be Thursday, Jan. 3, from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m., in the Chapel of the Good Shepherd, St. John Lutheran Home where a Celebration of Life will follow at 11:00.  Chaplain Noel Wetter and Pastor Nita Parker will officiate at the service. Interment will be at the Sundown Lutheran Cemetery.

Phyllis Nelsen was born on Feb. 10, 1927, in Springfield, Brown County, Minnesota, to William and Myrtle (Potter) Krueger. After graduating from Springfield High School, she attended communications school in Minneapolis, then worked a year for Western Union in New York City. Upon her return to Minnesota, she attended business school in Mankato, then worked for Pure Oil in Minneapolis.  Upon her engagement she moved back home and worked with a law firm in Redwood Falls until her marriage. She married E. James “Jim” Nelsen on Feb. 14, 1948. Through the years Phyllis was active in her church women’s groups, was a Sunday school teacher and sang in the choir. When she wanted her children to be in 4-H, she recruited other families and formed the Peppy Peppers 4-H Club. Eventually the club merged with the Mighty Mites 4-H Club, where she also served as a leader. She helped write a history of Sundown Township and was president of the Redwood County Extension. She was active in the Clements Legion Auxiliary, and volunteered at the Historical Museum in Redwood Falls. She also worked as an aide in the Springfield Elementary School for several years. Following retirement, Phyllis and Jim traveled extensively around the U.S. even going as far north as Barrow, Alaska, on the shores of the Arctic Ocean. Phyllis lived a very full life with lots of friends and time spent with her family. She and Jim spent a week each summer with as many family members who could make it to Cragun’s on Gull Lake in the Brainerd area, where they enjoyed many happy times together.

She is survived by her husband, Jim, of Springfield; children, Colleen (James) Hayes of Lakeville, Diane (Attilio) DeMarco, of Frederick, Maryland,  Brian (Tamara) Nelsen of Bloomington, Illinois, and Janean (Terry) Tucker of Duluth; step-grandsons, Ken and Keith Hayes; grandchildren, Nyssa Hayes, Serena DeMarco, Seve DeMarco, and Calista Tucker; and two step-great-grandchildren, Madeleine and Kyle Hayes. 

Arrangements are with the Sturm Funeral Home in Springfield. Online condolences may be left for the family at

Memorials preferred to St. John Lutheran Home Circle of Care and Sundown Cemetery Association. 

Springfield Advance-Press

13 S. Marshall Avenue PO Box 78 Springfield, MN 56087