Charles Nelson, 96, Albert Lea

Published 12:00 am Monday, March 10, 2008

The funeral service for Charles W. &8220;Chuck&8221; Nelson of Albert Lea will be held at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday at First Lutheran Church, Albert Lea. The Rev. Dan Baker will officiate. Interment will be in Graceland Cemetery. Visitation will be one hour before services at the church. Bonnerup Funeral Service is assisting the family with arrangements.

Charles died on Saturday, March 8, 2008, at the Good Samaritan Center in Albert Lea. He was 96 years old.

Charles was born in Freeborn County on Aug. 27, 1911, the son of Carl and Hanna (Christofferson) Nelsen. He attended rural Freeborn County Schools and graduated from Albert Lea High School in 1929.

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On July 28, 1932, Charles was united in marriage with Margaret Ness at the First Lutheran Parsonage in Albert Lea.

From 1932 to1935, Charles worked for the Farmers Seed Loan Office in Minneapolis. In 1935, he began operating a service station on South Broadway and Sixth Street in Albert Lea. In 1937 Charles opened a new Texaco station at the then address of 532 Babcock Ave. (now 532 E. Main). Charles operated this station for over 63 years, until 2000 when he sold the property and retired at the age of 88.

Charles enjoyed fishing, hunting, and outdoor activities. He hunted deer to the age of 89, killing his last deer at the age of 88.

Charles enjoyed traveling, time with his family and grandchildren, and his work which he considered rewarding in helping customers and friends, many for one, two, and three generations with upkeep and problems with their automobiles.

He is survived by grandchildren: Barbara Strohoffler and her husband Alex, great grandson, Carl, and great granddaughter, Ava of Mendota Heights, grandson, Douglas Thomesen and his wife Peggy (Margaret) and great grandchildren, Emily and Kaitlyn of Cromwell, Conn.; son-in-law Harland Thomesen of Shoreview.

Charles was preceded in death by his wife Margaret in 1994; daughter Patricia in 1996; sisters: Ida Thompson and Leona Jorgenson; and brothers: Albert, Otto, Leonard, Henry, Edmund and Marcus Nelson. Charles was the last of nine children.

All of Charles&8217; working life, but for three years, was spent in work involving the automobile. This totaled over 68 years. A 1924 Hupmobile was his first patient and in 2000 it was not unusual for Charles to service a 2000 model automobile. He witnessed gasoline rising from 17.9 cents per gallon to over 2.00 per gallon. Charles leased new cars for 25 years and sold used cars for over 45 years.

Many local people have benefited from his careful choice in quality used cars. At his death, Charles was still wearing the gold watch that Texaco presented him in 1964 for 30 years of service.

Charles will be missed, respected, and remembered by his many friends. &8220;Chuck&8217;s Station&8221; was a daily stop not only for service but for conversation.