“Sister Nelson Remembered,” Liahona, July 2005, N6
At a funeral service held on February 18, 2005, at the Salt Lake Bonneville Stake Center, Sister Dantzel Nelson, wife of Elder Russell M. Nelson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, was remembered as a woman of “beautiful character” by President Gordon B. Hinckley.
Elder Nelson was with his wife as she passed away unexpectedly in their Salt Lake City home on February 12, at the age of 78.
Sister Nelson was born Dantzel White on February 17, 1926, on the White family farm in Perry, Utah. She graduated from the University of Utah with a bachelor of science degree in education. She taught music and speech at Hawthorne Elementary School in Salt Lake City.
Sister Nelson’s love of music helped her to meet her future husband. The couple met as cast members while performing the musical Hayfoot, Strawfoot. After dating for three years, they were married on August 31, 1945, in the Salt Lake Temple.
Sister Nelson gave birth to 10 children. The first 9 children were daughters. She enjoyed being with her 54 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
In addition to using her talents to bless the lives of her children, she did the same in blessing the lives of others. A talented singer, Sister Nelson was a member of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir for 20 years.
Sister Nelson loved her family, and in order to provide a solid bridge of communication as the family grew, she created the Nelson News, a monthly publication that chronicled family events. She published the newsletter for more than 20 years.