Doris Jane Nelson, age 80, of Shelton, CT, died peacefully at home surrounded by family on Friday, June 1. Nelson raised a family and spent most of her married life in Bedford Village and was involved in many civic organizations here.
Nelson was the daughter of the late Frank E. Wadleigh, and the late Ruth Emma (Perry) Wadleigh, and sister of the late Malcolm Wadleigh. She attended Stevens High School in Claremont, NH, and graduated valedictorian in 1949 – speaking at the graduation ceremony on her vision of the impact of television on the American family both positive and negative. She was athletic and was a majorette in her school marching band, and competed in pair skating with her brother Frank P. Wadleigh.
After graduation, she worked for the New England Telephone Company, before marrying Andrew W. Nelson III and raising their four daughters together in Bedford Village.
She was an active volunteer for the Bedford Village Elementary PTA, Bedford Republicans, Bedford Garden Club, and the Bedford Village Badminton Club. She also enjoyed teaching figure skating at the in Katonah.
She then joined the staff of the . Nelson was active in a wide variety of local educational and charity organizations as a volunteer while living in Lake Forest, IL, including teaching reading to children. Her enthusiasm, love of learning, and embracing the Orton-Gillingham approach to reading positively impacted many students. She took tremendous pride in working as Tax Collector and later as City Clerk at the Claremont City Hall. She loved her childhood community and was always meticulous especially in conducting elections.
Nelson spent 20 years devoted to her work at Claremont City Hall. At home, she is best remembered playing the piano with grace and pizzazz, especially the song Rustle of Spring. She had a passion for music and could play any Broadway show tune with Camelot being her favorite score. Nelson is a Daughter of the American Revolution and a Mayflower descendant. Survivors include four children; Cher Nelson Floyd and her husband Edward of Plymouth Kingdom, Vermont; Laurie R. Nelson of Shelton; Barbara L. Brooks of Shelton and Pamela M. Aris and her husband James of Redding; cherished grandchildren Nelson and his wife Molly, Samuel, Morgan, James, Alan, Theo and Andy; her brother Frank Wadleigh and his wife Jean; sister-in-law Ramona Wadleigh; four nieces, one nephew, 10 great nieces and nephews and 10 great great nieces and nephews.