This year’s Paris 4th of July Parade Grand Marshalls will be Nyle and Janet Nelson of Montpelier.
Many of you will remember them from Paris as they lived there for close to 60 years, raising their four children, Nyla, Janelle, Chad, and Brett. Mr. Nelson also served on the City Council of Paris for four years. Because of their time in Paris and his service on the Council, they have been chosen to be the Grand Marshalls.
Meeting with Mr. and Mrs. Nelson was a pleasure. They are such a sweet couple. Mr. Nelson is very talkative while Mrs. Nelson is very quiet, reserved, and private. They were very gracious and welcoming with a lovely home that reminded me so much of my grandparents’ home.
Mrs. Nelson was born in Grace while Mr. Nelson was born and raised in Bloomington, graduating from Fielding High School in 1954. He worked around the farmers in Bloomington, which he says helped him make it through high school. He worked at Hansen Lumber and then lived in Idaho Falls with his brother, working for the CC Anderson store.
Mrs. and Mrs. Nelson met on a blind date, introduced by his friend, Vernon Bateman. Mrs. Nelson had known Marion Bateman, and Mr. Nelson had known Vernon Bateman his whole life. Mr. Nelson said, “Don’t know why he (Vernon) didn’t grab that before I did!”
Mr. and Mrs. Nelson were later married in Alexander, on the lawn by the dam, and Mr. Nelson said, “I decided I better settle down and grab that while I had a chance!”
After they were married, they moved a couple of times then ended up in Paris. Mr. Nelson worked for the State of Idaho for 35 years in the Engineering Department and then snow plowing and maintenance for 15 years. After that, he retired.
Mrs. Nelson said, “If you go anywhere, no matter how far away you are, someone will yell, ‘Hi Nyle!, because he worked for the State.”
After Mr. Nelson retired, he was on the Paris City Council for four years under Mayor Tim Toland. While on the Council, they were able to accomplish a lot of things and work on a lot of major issues he is very proud of.
As mentioned, Mr. and Mrs. Nelson had four children. However, Nyla Kelsey and Janelle Thomas were sadly lost to cancer. Chad has retired form working at the INEL site. Brett (most often called “Bones”) is self-employed putting in flooring, carpet, and tile, and does some building of decks, etc. Chad is married to his wife, Robin (his first wife, Orvella Crane, is deceased), and they have four children together. Brett is married to Jill Rasmussen, and they have six children together.
Mr. and Mrs. Nelson have numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Mrs. Rasmussen says that Mr. Nelson is a very friendly person and has everyone laughing all the time, especially the grandkids. She says she can remember when the little grandkids would come to their house and there would be three of them sitting on his lap saying, “Gramps! Gramps! Gramps!” All the time she would be sitting on the couch alone! One time someone in the family said he attracts kids like honey.
She says, “He’s just a special fellow.”
Mr. Nelson says that Mrs. Nelson is as friendly as he is, she just holds it back more, although she’s not as noisy or as loud as he is. Although, she says she would rather sit down and read a book than anything.
They both want to thank the Mayor of Paris for giving them the honor of being the Parade Grand Marshalls this year.
Mrs. Nelson said, “It’s not something we really wanted, but we appreciate the Mayor and City Council for asking us. We don’t show it much, but we really appreciate it. I cried when they asked Nyle. I called Chad and his wife, and Chad started crying and they had to leave the cafe they were at. It’s just an emotional, pleasant thing.”
Mr. Nelson said, “It’s hard for me to believe.”
They both said they miss Paris now that they live in Montpelier, but they are happy in Montpelier and Bones and Chad take good care of them. They love Bear Lake and they appreciate the people, especially in Paris and Bloomington where they have known the people all their lives.
Mr. Nelson said, “Bear Lake is a great area to live in.”