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June 12, 2024 - 00:00
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Ardell Harold Nelson (89) of Warren, Pennsylvania, passed away peacefully at his home in Vanderpool, Texas on 6 June 2024.

He went to college at Penn State and graduated with a B.S. in Civil Engineering. He was also in R.O.T.C. so after graduation, he served in the Air Force for 3 years. He met his future first wife, Jeanette McCoy, in basic training in Biloxi, Mississippi before being transferred to Moses Lake, Washington where his first child, Harold Ardell Nelson was born.

After being discharged from the Air Force in 1960, he returned to Pennsylvania where he worked in the oil and gas industry. He had 3 more children, Sharon, Yvonne, and Debra. In 1972, he moved to Houston and started his own business developing floating covers for oil storage tanks. After selling the business, he moved to Galveston with his second wife, Mary Margaret (Peggy).

In 1977 he fulfilled a lifelong dream and purchased a sailboat in Holland. He and his son Harold, stepson Marty, and wife Peggy, spent a year sailing from Holland, to Spain, Madeira, Canary Islands, across the Atlantic to Grenada, and island hopping, eventually ending up in the Bahamas where the boat made its home. Many years were spent after that returning to the Bahamas for shorter trips around the islands. In 2015 he sold the boat to a couple from Mississippi who are to this day sailing around the open seas.

In 1980, he moved to Vanderpool and in 1981 married his third wife Heidi. They were married until 2005 when they decided to amicably go their separate ways.

He was preceded in death by his first wife Jeanette, second wife Peggy, mother and father Bertha and Harold, and his daughter Yvonne.

He is survived by his son Harold, daughters Sharon and Debra, 6 grandchildren, and 12 great-grandchildren.

The family will have a private ceremony in Spokane, Washington where his daughters now reside, and his daughter Yvonne is buried.