Kookie was born in Leonard, North Dakota to Harry Paul and Emma (Friese) Steinkraus. She was preceded in death by her son David W. Nelson of Colorado Springs, five brothers (all Steinkraus); Herman "Jack" of Colorado Springs, Arthur of Minneapolis, Edwin of Sebeka, Minnesota and Fred and Lloyd of Bremerton, Washington, and one sister, Adeline "Kit" MacFarland of San Francisco, California. Kookie was a devoted Mother and Granna. Her greatest love was caring for her Grandchildren, Greg and Crystal, doing arts and crafts and painting with them. She was known to actively "play" with her own children and then also her grandchildren. She loved the outdoors, camping, hiking, skiing, fishing, boating, and long walks with her dogs Kappie and Peppy. She also loved to work in the yard, with green grass and beautiful flowers. In 1946 she married David W. Nelson of Fargo, North Dakota. They then moved to Rocky Ford, Colorado where they owned a bowling alley and in 1953 settled in Colorado Springs. Bowling was their passion having owned two bowling alleys and Nelson Industries - a bowling supply store, where Kookie embroidered thousands of bowling shirts and the athletic letters "AF" for the Air Force Academy, all with an embroidery machine that took very special skills to operate. She and Dave loved music, with her playing the piano and Dave playing the Bass Viola. She would play the piano for hours by ear. Never learning to read music, she would read the words on paper and the music would flow through her fingers. She later loved selling Real Estate while briefly in Oregon, and then selling Mobile Homes in Colorado Springs. She lived briefly in Mesa Arizona, staying in Colorado Springs with her daughter's family in the summers. Her passion in retirement was painting. She painted many beautiful pictures and crafts. Funeral service will be at 11:00 a.m., Thursday, January 17, 2013, at First United Methodist Church, 420 N. Nevada Ave., Colorado Springs, CO 80903. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to First United Methodist Church, Missions and Outreach, or Cure Alzheimer's Fund, www.curealzfund.org.
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Published in The Gazette from Jan. 16 to Jan. 20, 2013