Cover photo for Neva Nelsen's Obituary
Neva Nelsen Profile Photo
1924 Neva 2012

Neva Nelsen

July 25, 1924 — August 1, 2012

Neva Louise (Gourd) Nelsen was born July 25, 1924 in Adams County, Iowa. She was the seventh of ten siblings to Jess R. and Emily Parrott Gourd. Neva passed away on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at the Corning Nursing Rehab Center in Corning, Iowa at the age of eighty-eight years and seven days.
Neva grew up on a farm near Corning. Her father was a farmer with dairy cows and her mother raised chickens for extra money. As a child, Neva was struck by a car and accidentally shot, but survived with few scars. Her older, married brother and sister frequently visited with their children when Neva was still at home and she enjoyed being around her nieces and nephews.
In 1941 she graduated Corning High School, her father died that same year. Neva completed Normal training and began teaching school. On August 2, 1948 she married Chubb Nelsen, in Bentonville, Arkansas. They spent their early married years in Prescott with a brief time in California, before moving to Corning where she worked at the Dime store and the NFO. In 1960 she attended Clarinda Junior College.
In the 70s she managed the Corning Airport Steakhouse and helped her cousin, Harvey Briles, with the Chicken Inn in Creston. In the 1980s and early 1990s she worked at Lazy Ike and as a receptionist for Dr. C.L. Bain until her retirement.
Neva loved to sew and made clothes for her daughter and later her grandchildren. She also tutored adults that struggled with reading, taking great satisfaction in helping someone learn to read. She and her husband attended many auctions and flea markets where she loved finding a bargain. She and Chubb also loved country music and spent many summer weekends at the Mount Etna music program.
A devoted grandmother, Neva spent almost every weekend with her grandchildren who adored spending the weekend with their grandparents where they learned to cook by helping her make Sunday dinners for the family.
Neva loved flowers and had an extensive yard that she filled with flowers until her home burned in 2007 and she moved to Westgate Housing.
Neva is survived by daughter, Lorita Ann (Brenda Fry) Nelsen Riley; granddaughter, Nicole (Kent) Cooney; grandson, Jesse Melvin (Tammy) Riley; great-granddaughter, Emily Mellyn Riley; great-grandson, Matthew Jesse Riley; step great-granddaughter, Jennifer (Donald) Shires; step great-great-grandson, Wyatt Shires; brother, Robert Gourd (Leona) of Corning; sister-in-law, Bessie Gourd of Kentucky; and many nieces and nephews that she adored.
Preceding Neva in death was her husband, Chubb Nelsen in 2007; her father in 1941; her mother in 1984; sisters: Annis Gourd Hayes and Kathryn Gourd Dixon; and brothers: Russell (Bill) Gourd, Ronald (Red) Gourd, Olin (Jack) Gourd; and infant brothers deceased before she was born: Richard Gourd, Donald Gourd and Ivan Gourd.

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Service Schedule

Past Services


Saturday, August 11, 2012

9:30 - 10:30 am (Central time)

Pearson Family Funeral Service & Cremation Center - Corning

701 7th Street, Corning, IA 50841

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