Nelle Irene Rice | Morris Nilsen Funeral Chapel

December 8, 1916 - February 16, 2020


Born in Clyde North Dakota on December 8, 1916, Nelle lived there until the age of two when the family moved to Lakota North Dakota where she grew up. The doctor said she was born on December 8th but her father said it was after midnight and was born December 9th. This was an ongoing joke and her birthday was celebrated on December 8th and 9th.

There were a total of nine children in the family (2 boys and 7 girls). Nelle was the 3rd from the youngest. Nelle shares that she didn’t learn much about housekeeping and she was the errand runner for the family (go fer). She shares that she didn’t know how to cook when she married, “poor Myrle”. She had great times growing up on the farm and being part of a big family.

Nelle married Myrle Rice (Doyon, North Dakota) on October 22, 1938. They were married for 54 years. They established their roots in Richfield MN where they lived for 17 years before moving to Fridley MN where they lived for 17 years as well. Myrle and Nelle found their way back to Richfield MN where they resided for the rest of their years.

Nelle and Myrle opened their home and hearts to Dennis Rice and Deniece Newling in July 1956. The kids were 9 years old. Nelle shares that it was a very happy and busy time.

Nelle went to county school through 8th grade and graduated from Lakota High School. She graduated from Secretarial Course at Minneapolis Business College.

Nelle did general office work for the War Department when Myrle was in the Air Corps at Chanute Field, Illinois for 4 years. She then worked as an Office Manager for the Department of Agriculture in Fergus Falls, MN for 5 years. When they relocated to the Metro area Nelle worked for Federal Civil Service and the Columbia Heights School District as a secretary.

In Nelle’s own words here claim to fame was making Divinity candy and lots of it! She also was a master of making brandy slushes and would store them in an ice cream pail so there was plenty available. Nelle and family spent many summer days up at Ottertail Lake at her sister Viv and brother in law Cliff’s family Lakehouse. For years Nelle was part of a weekly bridge group. She loved to play Cribbage, Crazy 8’s and Kings Corner. Nelle loved to tell jokes, share stories and teach her kids and grandkids songs she grew up on. Nelle had a strong relationship with the Lord and her faith was very important to her. Nelle and Myrle joined Hope Church in 1955 and she taught Sunday school.

Nelle was full of love and kindness. She will be missed dearly by all who knew her.

The family would like to express our appreciation and gratitude to Kim Cousins, the Pines staff and Fairview Hospice.

Funeral service will be held at 10:30 AM on Tuesday, February 25th, 2020 at Hope Presbyterian Church, 7132 Portland Ave. Visitation one hour prior. Private interment at Fort Snelling National Cemetery.




1 Comment

  1. Steph says:

    You will always rest in my heart and be my little birdie on my shoulder. Thank you for encouraging my humor and sarcasm and always making me laugh. You were my best friend in so many ways. We are connected forever, G-Love. I will always love you! ❤️❤️❤️

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