Laila Nelson


Laila Mae Nelson, age 87, of Willmar, Minnesota and formerly of Lake Lillian, passed away surrounded by her children on Thursday, August 26, 2021 at Carris Health - Rice Memorial Hospital in Willmar. A private, family service will be held Saturday, September 4 at Svea Lutheran Church in Svea, Minnesota.

Laila was born in 1934 to Herbert and Mabel (Olson) Christianson. She was baptized and confirmed at Svea Lutheran Church. She grew up on a farm near the east side of Kandiyohi Lake. She attended school in Atwater, played trumpet in the marching band and graduated from Atwater High School. Laila married Gerald Peterson in 1951 and their union was blessed with seven children. They lived on her parent’s farm near Lake Lillian before moving to California for six years. Laila was remarried to Dale Nelson in 1969 and they had one child together. Dale and Laila lived on Eagle Lake for more than 25 years.

Laila enjoyed traveling and has traveled throughout the United States and abroad. She loved Marco Island, Florida and wintered there for more than 20 years. She treasured spending time with her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Laila is survived by her children: Bonnie Rieger of Spicer, Karen Flaig of Willmar, Larry (Nancy) Peterson of Spicer, Michael (Pamela) Peterson of Willmar, Debra (Mark) Johnson of Spicer, Randall (Jeanette) Peterson of Blomkest, Patricia (Scott) Guse of Pennock, Ryan (Melanie) Nelson of Willmar, along with 22 grandchildren and 27 great-grandchildren. She is also survived by her sisters: Janice Zimmer and Arlene Nelson.

Laila was preceded in death by her parents; son, Brian Kolp; son-in-law, David Flaig; brothers, Aldon Christianson and Delroy Christianson, sister, Joyce Anderson; and former husband, Gerald Peterson.

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