Arthur “Nickiey” N. Nelson Jr., 63, of Hoopeston, passed away at 2:13 a.m. Friday, June 6, 2014, at his home with his family by his side after a lengthy battle with cancer.
Nickiey was born Oct. 7, 1950, in Danville, the son of Arthur “Red” and Marjorie Joanne (Mallotte) Nelson Sr.
He married Sheila Irvin on July 4, 1970, in Hoopeston, and later married Mary Walls on Jan. 3, 1993, in Wheaton, Mo.
He is survived by his wife, Mary Nelson of Hoopeston; father, Arthur “Red” Nelson Sr. of Hoopeston; two daughters, Lori Nelson Hardwick of Georgetown and Nickiey Jo Jerome Kochell of Wheaton, Mo.; step-daughter, Caitlyn Leatherwood of Stephenville, Texas; six grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; two brothers, Sonny (Connie) Gibson and Mike (Alma) Gibson both of Lafayette, Ind.; three sisters, Roseanne Coffman of Hoopeston, Sherry (Phil) Coffman of Wheaton, Mo., and Roberta (Duane) Reynolds of Ridgley, Mo.; former wife, Sheila (Billy Joe) Hardwick of Rossville; several nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews; and special niece and nephew, Jamie and Steven Wetli, who helped take care of Nickiey.
He was preceded in death by his mother, Marjorie Bell; step-mother, Florence Nelson; step-father, Robert “Snooky” Bell; daughter, Carolyna Nelson; three brothers, James “Bug” Bell, Don Nelson Sr. and George Nelson; sister, Theresa “Sissy” Nelson; and nephews, Jay and George Wetli.
Nickiey was enlisted in the United States Army and served in Korea from 1967 to 1971. He lived in Wheaton, Mo., for several years and worked as a truck driver for Hollaway Transportation. While living in Missouri, he attended Freewill Baptist Church in Purdy, Mo.
Nickiey was a member of American Legion Post 384 in Hoopeston. He loved working on cars, fishing, hunting and camping and, in his younger years, horseback riding. Nickiey was a very giving person who loved making new friends and making people laugh. He loved spending time with his family and friends and every child new him as “Uncle Nickiey.” Nickiey also enjoyed playing with his dogs, Gidget and Molly.