Carol Bryn Nelson

Posted: Friday, June 04, 2004

Former Juneau resident Carol Bryn Nelson, 50, died May 26, 2004, in Spokane, Wash., after a five-year battle with breast cancer.

She was raised in Libby, Mont., and graduated from high school in 1971. She received double degrees in elementary and special education from Eastern Montana College (MSU-Billings, Mont.) in 1976. She married Les Miller in 1981 in the Ross Creek Cedars near Libby. She had two sons, Edward (Ted) Nelson Miller, 15, and Andrew Nelson Miller, 12, both born in Juneau. She taught school for 25 years in Browning, Ronan, Libby, Mont., and Juneau.

After 17 years in Juneau, she retired in 2001 to Spokane to get out of the Southeast Alaska rain and warm up her bones. She traveled extensively throughout the United States, Greece, Netherlands and Germany, visiting friends and seeing places that she had read about. She incorporated many of these experiences in her school lesson plans.

She was active in her church and the communities where she lived, supporting local events and her sons' activities with her time and enthusiasm. She held the office of president in the local Delta Kappa Gamma chapter, an honorary educator's society, and was recording secretary for the state organization. She was an unwavering supporter of breast cancer awareness. In the summer of 2002, while she was being treated for the disease, she raised over $10,000 for breast cancer research by participating in a 60-mile walk to Seattle. She also participated and spoke at several other smaller events.

Her family wrote, "there were no strangers in Bryn's life, only friends that she had not yet met. Her warmth and enthusiasm drew people to her and held them in the circle of her friendship. She taught us to live in the present. Her phenomenal memory of people, places, dates and events endeared her to friends and family, and earned her the title of the family historian."

She is survived by her husband, Les; sons, Ted and Andrew; parents, Frank (Shorty) and Jenny Nelson; brother, Joel Nelson, and wife, Linda, their children, Erik and Mali; sister, Mary Beth Nelson, and husband, Steve Paustian, and their daughter, Kari; sister, Jennifer Nelson, and partner, Ron Cummings, and their children, Seth, Sidney and Lucas; and many aunts, uncles and cousins.

Memorial services for family and friends will be held at 5 p.m. Friday, June 4, at the Auke Bay School; at 5 p.m. Tuesday, June 8, at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Spokane, Wash.; and at 3 p.m. July 10, in Libby, Mont.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests a donation to the MSU-Billings Foundation, C. Bryn Nelson Scholarship at MSU-Billings Foundation, 1500 University Drive, Billings, MT 59101.

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