VeteranJames Nelson

James W. Nelson, 91, of Cuba died at 12:15 a.m. July 21, 2006, at Graham Hospital in Canton.

He was born Sept. 8, 1914, in Cuba, a son of James W. and Blanche Berkley Nelson. He married Ruth Timmons on Aug. 17, 1941, in Hoopeston. She survives.

Also surviving are one son, Jim of St. Joseph, Mich.; two daughters, Sue Nelson Pate of Maitland, Fla., and Janet Nelson Wallis of Mountain Home, Ariz.; one sister, Mary Elizabeth Hebard of Knoxville; four grandchildren; and one great-granddaughter.

He served in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II from 1942 to 1946, participating in the battle for Iwo Jima. He was first lieutenant with the 302nd Fighter Control Squadron.

He graduated from Cuba High School in 1932 and attended Western Illinois University, graduating in 1939. Later, he earned two graduate degrees in chemistry and education. In 1943, he graduated from University of Chicago Institute of Meteorology. He was a retired educator with 20 years at Cuba School District. He was the assistant Fulton County superintendent of schools from 1968 to 1974. He also was the retired owner of the Cuba Journal.

He was a member of Cuba First United Methodist Church for 81 years. He also was a member of Cuba American Legion Russell Smith Post #533 and the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States.

Services were held Monday at his church with Rev. Joe Tomich officiating. Burial was at Cuba Cemetery with military rites accorded by his American Legion Post. Henry-Lange Memorial Home in Cuba was in charge of arrangements.

Memorials may be made to the Alzheimer's Association Central Illinois Chapter in honor of his wife or to his church.

Published in the Astoria South Fulton Argus on 7/26/2006