Rosemary Nelson, age 89, of Ramona, passed away peacefully on November 8,
2022 at Bethel Lutheran Home in Madison, SD.
Mass of Christian Burial will be 10:30 AM on Monday, November 14 th at St.
William Catholic Church, Ramona with Father Chester Murtha as the Celebrant.
Visitation will be 2-4 PM on Sunday at Rustand-Weiland Funeral Chapel with a
prayer service at 4 PM followed by a Rosary. Visitation will continue on Monday
one hour prior to mass. Burial will be in St. William Cemetery, Ramona. Online
guestbook is at www.rustandweilandfuneral.com.
Memorials are preferred to St. William Cemetery Fund, 201 Pearce Ave., Ramona,
Rosemary Rensch was born to Emanuel and Mary (Kehrwald) Rensch on June 25,
1933, in Madison, SD. She was the first of nine children, four boys and five girls.
She graduated from Ramona, SD, in 1951, attended Mount Marty College in
Yankton, and took her first job at the Sioux Falls stock yards, where met John
(“Jack”) Hollywood Nelson and married him in 1953.
Rosemary and Jack lived in Sioux Falls, Fargo, and on ranches in Wyoming and
Arizona before returning to South Dakota, living in Rapid City until they settled in
Fort Pierre. There Rosemary focused on raising their ten children and eventually
working at the Stanley County courthouse. She was elected as Stanley County
Treasurer as a Democrat and successfully campaigned and served in that capacity
until she retired.
Rosemary was active in the Catholic Church, Sweet Adelines singing choir, River
Harmony singing group and the Red Hat Society. She loved music and was an
accomplished pianist and singer, performing solo at hundreds of weddings and
funerals. She enjoyed dancing whenever she could, from the time of big band
dances of her youth to senior dances late in life.
Rosemary learned to cook for her growing family and delighted them with angel
food cakes with seven-minute frosting for each birthday, homemade bread and
caramel rolls, and dough-boys. Her home was filled with music and activities and
was often a second home to her own friends and those of her children, many of
whom called her “Mama Rose.”
She enjoyed visiting her children, grandchildren, and siblings in Georgia,
Tennessee, Hawaii, California, and Italy, by air travel and by train. She
encouraged her children in music, art, and athletics and was an active and vocal
supporter of their activities in band, choir, theater, wrestling, football, and cross
country. Her children continue her legacy in education, music, art, and public
Rosemary is preceded in death by her parents; her brothers Robert and William;
and by an infant son Daniel.
She is survived by her children Joseph (Mary), Rita (Mark) Clarke, John (Deana),
James, Rebecca (Kenji) Loveland, Jesse, Renee Brazil, Justin, Jay, and Jered
(Sarah); 17 grandchildren, 10 great-grandchildren, and 2 great-great grandchildren;
brothers James and Louis and sisters Kathleen (Paul) Floris, Janice Rensch,
Margaret “Peggy” Montoya, and Cecelia Day.
Rosemary was always ready with a smile, a joke, and laughter, and if you gave her
a chance, she would supply music and song. She will be missed dearly by her family and her many friends.