Jonel Henderson Nielson passed away on Saturday, June 1, 2019, at her home in Delta,Utah. She was born to Warren Henderson and Artemisia Henrie Henderson in Sutherland, Utah on July 1, 1929. She moved to Delta as a young child and has lived in Delta her entire life. She fondly remembered her days as a young girl with her sister, Dorothy, by her side playing in the hills and the fields along the old sugar factory row, and she remembered (not so fondly) feeding, tending, and picking chickens to help with the family food supply. Jonel graduated from Delta High School, where she was involved in the Marching Band and Pep Club. She also worked behind the counter, making milk shakes and sandwiches at the Baker Drug Store during her High School years.
After High School Jonel Attended Brigham Young University for a year. Then she met a young veteran, Teddy Lars Nielson, at her father’s store in Oak City, and welcomed him home from the war by agreeing to be his wife. They were married in the Salt Lake LDS Temple on January 3, 1950. Soon after that they built a home in Delta, the same home that she lived in for 67 years, and in which she passed away. She loved her home and kept it spotless. The kitchen floors were as clean as the counter tops, and there was never any clutter or any mess. She loved sitting in her chair and looking out the large living room window the last few months of her life.
Jonel and Teddy had one child, their daughter, JoAnn. JoAnn lived in Arizona for 11 years after marrying, and moved her family back to Delta in 1984. That made Jonel’s life complete, and she found perfect joy and contentment having her loving daughter close by. Her five grandchildren had Grandma Jonel as their biggest fan and number one cheerleader in everything they did, and Jonel loved following and supporting them.
Jonel is an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints. She served in Young Women and Primary for many years, and she always said her greatest joy was teaching little children. She served as the compassionate Service Leader in the Delta Third Ward for many years, and often went for long stretches with one to three funerals every week to plan and work. Late in her life she was called as Librarian in the Third Ward, a position she loved for 20 years. She was the “wizard of the copy machine”, and kept an old temperamental copier running for many years after everyone else had given up on it.
She was an accomplished seamstress and made all of JoAnn’s dresses during her growing up years. She embroidered pillowcases, dish towels, and quilt tops. She crocheted Granny Squares and Mile-A-Minute afghans, making over a dozen of them in the last two years, keeping her hands and her mind busy. She was an impeccable record keeper, writing in journals and creating scrapbooks, leaving her family a priceless treasure of information, pictures, and written entries about her life and theirs.
Jonel is celebrating her reunion with her mother and father, her husband, Teddy; sister: Dorothy; brother: Bill; and her great-granddaughter: Addison. She will be missed every hour of every day by her daughter: JoAnn (son-in-law: Leo Campbell of Delta); five grandchildren and 16 great grandchildren.
Jonel showed us how to be happy living a simple life, being well satisfied with what she had and finding peace and contentment with her lot. She lived a very modest frugal life, and her motto benefits all. She says, “we all have to paint our own rainbow with the colors we’ve been given, and I have been happy with the colors I’ve had.”
Funeral Services will be held on Thursday, June 13, at 11:30 am, at the Delta 3rd Ward LDS Chapel. A Viewing will be held on Thursday morning, 9:30-11:10 am, prior to the service. Burial will be in the Delta City Cemetery.