Born March 29, 1914, in Merimac, Okla., she was the daughter of Edwin and Della Walker, God-fearing farmers.
In 1934 she married Roy Fitzpatrick, the boy down the road. Together they raised three daughters. The family came to Powell in 1944, then moved to Gas Hills, where Ethel was the postmistress for 20 years. Roy died in 1971 at the age of 64. Ethel moved to Thermopolis in the later 1970s.
Ethel married Sigurd Nelson in 1980 in Thermopolis. He died in 1984.
Ethel was one of life’s passionate participants. She found joy in each day, regardless of her circumstances. She practiced what she preached.
A lifelong learner, she loved knowledge and education. She was a great pie-maker and she brought joy to many with her talent for sewing and tailoring. She loved country and gospel music and when she sang, “How Great Thou Art,” she meant every word.
Survivors include her daughters, Shirley (Dale) Bender of Vancouver, Wash., and Charlotte (Jack) Bell of Ogden, Utah; her sister, Anita Curl of Wellington, Kan.; five grandchildren, Terry, Doug, Ron, Chris and Jeni; two step-grandchildren, Amber and Lisa; 12 great-grandchildren and nine great-great-grandchildren.
In addition to her husbands, Roy and Sig, she was preceded in death by her daughter, Sylvia (in 1953), grandson, Jeff (2006), and eight siblings.
Graveside services were held Friday, Dec. 10 at Crown Hill Cemetery in Powell.
Mortimore Funeral Home in Thermopolis was in charge of services.