Cover photo for Julia Nelson's Obituary
Julia Nelson Profile Photo
1939 Julia 2024

Julia Nelson

October 20, 1939 — February 25, 2024

Julia Elizabeth Nelson, age 84, of Atlantic, IA, passed away on Sunday, February 25, 2024, at Cass Health in Atlantic, IA.

Open visitation with family will be held on Wednesday, February 28, 2024, from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., at the Schmidt Family Funeral Home of Atlantic, IA.

Funeral service will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, February 29, 2024, at the First United Methodist Church in Atlantic, IA, with Pastor Dan Wiebesiek officiating. A luncheon will be held following the service in the reception hall of the United Methodist Church.

The interment will take place at Atlantic Cemetery.

Memorials may be designated to the Iowa Donor Network in memory of Julie, and they may be mailed to the Schmidt Family Funeral Home P.O. Box 523, Atlantic, IA 50022.

Julia Elizabeth (Hemsted) Nelson was born to John and Mildred Hemsted on October 20th,1939, in Pocatello, ID. In early 1944, the Hemsteds’ moved to the family farmstead near Griswold. Julie attended school in the Atlantic area and graduated with the Class of 1957.

Julie married the “love of her life,” Dave Nelson, on April 18, 1957. Her greatest joy in life was being a mother to Jeff, Tim, Sue, Cindy, Curt, and Pam. Julie had an immeasurable capacity for being firm yet fair; a realist and a dreamer, a hard worker but easy going and for being her family’s biggest cheerleader. To know Julie was to hear about her children, grandchildren, and great–grandchildren at every encounter, with the expectation that you would be able to keep everyone straight all the time.

In 1973, Julie started her career at The Heritage House as a CNA, ultimately working her way up to the position she was most proud of, Physical Therapy Assistant. Julie was a natural caregiver, which led to her role as a PTA being a perfect fit for 40+ years. After a brief attempt at retirement, Julie returned to work at Atlantic Specialty Care as their Activity Director for 9 years, where she was known for throwing the best holiday parties and her craft ideas.

Hours and hours were spent by Julie pushing her needle, cross stitching countless baby blankets for her great-grandchildren, as well as quilts for her daughters and granddaughters. Julie was a seasoned shopper, always up for a trip to the city for lunch, nails, and retail therapy. Traveling was something she always made time for, whether it was fishing in Canada, or snorkeling in the Virgin Islands. Above all, Julie’s favorite hobby was spending time with her family.

Julie embarked on the adventure of a lifetime in 2017, when she reconnected with her “soulmate”, Russ Bergmann. They spent the next three years loving, living, and exploring together. Be it an RV tour of the West Coast, zip-lining in the tropics, or sky-diving at 80 years old, Julie’s travels with Russ were some of the happiest moments of her life.

With her family by her side, Julie took her final trip on February 25th, 2024, into the arms of those who have passed; her husband, Dave Nelson, her granddaughter, Holly Nelson, her parents, John and Mildred Hemsted, her sister Margie Herbert (Wayne), niece Ramona Herbert, her in-laws Mervin and Juanita Nelson, brother-in-law Gene Nelson, son in law Michael Steffens and her soulmate Russell Bergmann.

Those left to cherish her memory include her six children and bonus daughter, 18 grandchildren, 24 great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and countless friends.

Julie Nelson's Children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren

Jeff (LeAnn) Nelson

Heather Davis

Hadley and Callan

Haley (Andrew) Karr


Tim (Ann) Nelson

David (Melissa) Nelson

Corbin, Katherine, Conner and Cameron

Andrew (Natasha) Nelson

Alexia, Giuliana and Nahla

Sue Littleton

Alex (Adam) McCunn

Hallie, Brystol, Jozie and Jax

Ashley (Michael) Updike

Damian and Chloe

Cindy Humphrey

Chad (Lori) Steffens

Lily and Lucy

Nicole Steffens

Makynzie and Ethan

Jason Humphrey

Curt (Annette) Nelson

Zac Nelson

Seth (Carson) Nelson


Logan Nelson

Pam (Doug) Faehnrich

Paige Kilgore (Joel)


Kyle Kilgore


Tyler Kilgore

Emma & Brianna Faehnrich

Bonus Daughter: Rebecca (Aaron) Brandwein

Jared Hood

Jaylee and Kaiden

Hope Brandwein

Funeral arrangements are handled by the staff of Schmidt Family Funeral Home of Atlantic, IA.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Julia Nelson, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Public Visitation

Wednesday, February 28, 2024

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

Schmidt Family Funeral Home - Atlantic

1804 E 7th St, Atlantic, IA 50022

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Funeral Service

Thursday, February 29, 2024

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

First United Methodist Church

800 Poplar Street, Atlantic, IA 50022


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