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  • Harley Nielsen

    I'm probably the least qualified person to say a few words about Harley Nielsen, who passed away this last Friday, but I really feel compelled to say something. I've only been active with our chapter for a little over a year now, though from day one Harley was one of the folks who really made me feel welcome. He had been around the club long enough to remember my grandpa, who was the entire reason I fell for Studes in the first place. This connection was one of the lures that had helped me become involved. I'll be honest, it can be intimidating being the only young 30-something guy in a club of people who are much older and more experienced than you, but Harley wasn't afraid to make me part of the group. He would share stories, laugh with the jokes, and let me chime in. Harley was a friend to the Studebaker world, and will be missed.
    '63 Lark Custom, 259 v8, auto, child seat

    "Your friendly neighborhood Studebaker evangelist"

  • #2
    The following is Harley Nielsen's obituary

    Harley James, son of Chris L. and Dagmar (Christiansen) Nielsen, was born April 19,1926 on a farm in Audubon County, Iowa. He attended county school near his home. Harley entered the United States Army in 1945 and received his honorable discharge in 1947 after serving in the military police.
    Harley lived and worked in the Harlan, IA. area until moving to Council Bluffs in 1956. On March 28, 1958 Harley was united in marriage with Bonita Alice Hermeling in Omaha, Nebraska. Harley and Bonnie were the parents of one daughter. They lived outside Council Bluffs until moving to a retirement apartment. Harley worked maintenance most of his adult life until retiring in 1988.
    Harley and Bonnie enjoyed going to car shows with their restored black cherry red Studebaker. He belonged to the Studebaker Drivers Club. Harley was an avid reader and a member of American Legion Post 2.
    Harley was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in December of 2012. After a courageous battle, he died early Friday morning at Josie Harper Hospice House, Omaha, NE. on May 17, 2013 at the age of 87 and 26 days.
    Preceding him in death are his parents; brother Norman Nielsen and brother in law Delbert Criss.
    Harley is survived by his wife Bonnie Nielsen of Council Bluffs, and daughter Margaret (Peg) Stingley (Jerry) of Omaha, NE.; three grandsons John Reese of Des Moines, Tony Reese (Judy) of Aurora,CO. and Wesley Stingley (Eva) of Omaha, NE. six great grandchildren; sister Myrna Criss of Wichita, KS. and many other family and friends.

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Harley and Bonnie were long time faithful members of the Husker Chapter of the Studebaker Drivers Club, Harley will be sorely missed. He was quite a joker and story teller as many of us can attest to. Him and Bonnie used to travel to all the Zone meets in the central U.S. in their '50 Champion that he had inherited from his father. His father having purchased the car brand new in Harlan, Iowa. The Champion has now passed on to grandson Tony from Aurora, CO. Tony has joined SDC and the Conestoga Chapter and plans to bring the car to Colorado Springs for this years International meet. The Husker Chapter was represented at the funeral by 7 Chapter families, bringing 5 Studebakers. Harley, being of Danish ancestry, was buried in Kimballton, Ia. today, May 22nd. A Danish film crew who happened to be filming a documentary about descendants of Danish immigrants in the area was given permission by the family to film the service and burial. The family was very appreciative of all the Studebakers that appeared with their owners to pay their respects.

    Respectfully submitted
    Frank van Doorn
    SDC North Central Director
    Last edited by 41 Frank; 05-22-2013, 06:10 PM.
    Frank van Doorn
    Omaha, Ne.
    1962 GT Hawk 289 4 speed
    1941 Champion streetrod, R-2 Powered, GM 200-4R trans.
    1952 V-8 232 Commander State "Starliner" hardtop OD

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    • #3
      An interesting report, Frank; thank you.

      How appropriate that the Danish film crew was in the area at the time...and now we all know of at least one other woman named Dagmar! BP
      We've got to quit saying, "How stupid can you be?" Too many people are taking it as a challenge.

      Ayn Rand:
      "You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality."

      G. K. Chesterton: This triangle of truisms, of father, mother, and child, cannot be destroyed; it can only destroy those civilizations which disregard it.

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      • #4
        On the lighter side I remember a story Harley told us several years ago. Harley and Bonnie were returning from attending a Zone meet in the Gering/Scottsbluff, NE. area I believe. After some driving Harley got tired and turned the driving chores over to Bonnie. Traveling I-80 eastbound through Nebraska the road is relatively flat so the old '50 Champion two door sedan would cruise right along in overdrive. Harley proceeded to doze off and after a while awoke, looked around and sensed they were moving right along. Looking down at the speedometer Harley noticed Bonnie was cruising at the 75 mph speed limit. Suffice it to say that Bonnie received a good tongue lashing!
        Last edited by 41 Frank; 05-23-2013, 05:32 AM.
        Frank van Doorn
        Omaha, Ne.
        1962 GT Hawk 289 4 speed
        1941 Champion streetrod, R-2 Powered, GM 200-4R trans.
        1952 V-8 232 Commander State "Starliner" hardtop OD

        Comment


        • #5
          I would like to echo Jim's thoughts regarding Harley. I too was once a young 30s-something guy when I joined the Husker Chapter. Harley made me feel very welcome, as did the whole group. It was always heartwarming to see Harley and Bonnie together motoring along in their 1950 Champion still very much in love after many years of marriage. He was an outstanding ambassador for the Husker Chapter and will be missed terribly by his Studebaker family. His wooden clothespins anti-vapor lock system will long be remembered with a grin by his many friends in the chapter and in the midwest old car community. RIP Harley. You were truly one of a kind!

          John Waddell
          Studedude1961
          Omaha, NE

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