Gilbert Norman Nelson was born on 21 December, 1915 in Milwaukee, WI, the third child of William and Rose Luecht Nelson. He was baptized 18 March 1916 at Bethany Presbyterian Church and confirmed there 5 January 1930. He was confirmed in the Lutheran church when he joined Prince of Peace Lutheran Church on 9 March 1980.
Gilbert attended 16th Avenue Elementary School and was Vice President of his graduating class and editor of the class paper. He graduated from Boys' Technical High School 1 February 1934 with the skills necessary in the printing trade. He served on the student council his freshman year and was class president of the trade graduating class and as such gave the commencement speech. Upon graduating he served his apprenticeship at the Milwaukee Leader (later the Evening Post), became a member of the International Typographical Union and worked at the Milwaukee Sentinel for sixteen years and then the Milwaukee Journal for nineteen years until his retirement. As a young man he also operated the elevator at the First Wisconsin National Bank.
Gilbert married Annabelle Nelson (nee Schmidt) 27 May 1939. They had three daughters, Lani Ann, Linda Rose (deceased) and Leila Rae.
He served in the 4th JASCO unit attached to the First Marine Division of the U.S. Marine Corp from 28 October 1943 to 16 March 1945. Corporal Nelson was in action at Peleliu, Palau Island, Okinawa Ryukyu Islands, and in the occupation of China. His unit was later absorbed by the First division as the First Assault Signal Company (1ASCO). He received these World War II ribbons: Asiatic-Pacific with two stars, includes China Service medal; good Conduct, World war II Victory, Combat action Ribbon, Okinawa 50 Year Medal, and a Presidential Unit Citation Ribbon with two stars.
Gilbert was a life member of Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3091, the China Marine association, the Marine Corps League, Badger detachment, and the 1st Marine Division association.
League bowling was a hobby he enjoyed as well as working with and repairing radios and televisions for many years. He loved music and often sang along (beautifully) to the music in the room. He and Annabelle met at a dance and continued dancing well into their early nineties. He also enjoyed playing Sheepshead with friends and family.
Gilbert is survived by his wife of 74 years, Annabelle (nee Schmidt), daughters Lani (Howard) Beuerman and Leila (Benjamin L.) Chambers, grandchildren – Eric Beuerman, Lisa (William) Campbell, Lori (Oscar) Aguirre, Benjamin G. Chambers and Elyse Chambers, great grandchildren – Emma, Hava, Ruth and Esther Campbell and Oscar and Joshua Aguirre, his sister-in-law LaVerne Boers (Ray Beyer), and nieces and nephews.
A Memorial Service will be held Sunday, December 15, 2013 at Grace Lutheran Church, 303 Green Bay Road, Thiensville, WI at 11:30 AM followed by a fellowship gathering. Private burial Oakwood Rest Cemetery in Oak Creek. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to Pan De Vida ( a ministry of his granddaughter in Ecuador) -www.pandevida.org.ec
or to a memorial of your own choosing.