Nancy Lee Anderson, 71, of Radcliff, passed away Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2013, at Hardin Memorial Hospital after being in declining health for a number of years.
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Nancy was born July 8, 1941, one of four daughters born to the late Bernardine and Jack White in the coal mining town of Windber, Pa. In the 1950s, the family moved to Detroit, where Nancy went to high school, had her first job, graduated in 1959 and became a trained cosmetologist.
Nancy was a skilled beautician and was employed at Northland Mall in Artiste's Salon. She had many regular customers and on many occasions was detailed to groom models for fashion shows in downtown Detroit's upscale hotels. It was in Detroit, at an Irish dance hall, that Nancy met a GI, an army paratrooper, on leave from Fort Campbell. That night was Oct. 20, 1962, and the Cuban Missile Crisis was full-blown. The GI and Nancy were immediately attracted to each other. The next day Nancy invited him to supper and to meet her parents. They then went to a movie and said goodnight with another date set for two days later. It wasn't to be. Her GI was recalled to Fort Campbell. The 101st Airborne Division was going to war. She was at the bus station to see him depart and share a goodbye kiss. There were "we'll see each other" letters, the phone call on payday and pictures, and her parents really liked the GI. Love blossomed. A couple of passes, then a 30-day leave and they knew this was for keeps. On March 14, 1964, in St. Brigid Church in Detroit, Nancy White and Spc. John Anderson were married and that marriage lasted 48 years.
Nancy followed her husband to Germany and set-tled down to be an Army wife. No easy task at that time, but they were blessed with two beautiful children; a girl, Peggy, in 1965 and a son, Tom, in 1967. In April 1967, John was ordered to Vietnam and Nancy and the kids returned to Detroit to be with her parents. In 1968, John returned and the family departed for Fort Bragg, N.C.
Eleven months later, John was back in Vietnam and Nancy and the kids returned to Detroit to her mother. One year later, in 1970, John returned and then it was off to Germany for three years. Nancy and the kids would return to Germany for their third tour in 1976, between assignments at Fort Ritchie, Md., and Germany. Nancy and the kids visited Ireland, East Germany, Paris and other of Europe's fine cities. In 1979, assignment orders sent the family to Fort Knox and what eventually became their home.
In 1980, with the kids now in high school, Nancy became employed at the former Heck's Department store, remaining there until the mid-1980s as a department manager. After retirement she became the full-time housewife she always wanted to be. In 1985 Nancy picked where they would live in Radcliff. John retired in 1992. After more than 28 years, her days as an Army wife ended. She loved the area, had many friends and enjoyed shopping, cooking, bingo and visiting her sisters, until her health deteriorated.
Survivors include her husband, Retired Sgt. Maj. John Anderson; her daughter, Peggy Underwood; two grandsons, Johnny and Andrew Underwood; a great-grandson, Kayden Underwood; a son, Tom, of Elizabethtown; three sisters, Judi Ward of Michigan, Jackie Leonard of Florida and Sharon Nelles of Windsor, Canada; a sister-in-law, Frances Anderson of Graigue-Cullen, Carlow, Ireland; a grandaughter, Naoimh Dooley (Jim); and two great-grandchildren, Jack and Eadoin, both of Cashel Tipperary, Ireland; and her long-time friends in Kentucky, Betty Mleczko and Theresa Bailey.
Private services were held.
Interment will be in Kentucky Veterans Cemetery-Central in Radcliff.
Nelson-Edelen-Bennett Funeral Home in Radcliff was in charge of arrangements.
Nelson-Edelen-Bennett Funeral Home
205 Highland Avenue
Vine Grove, KY 40175
Published in The News-Enterprise on Jan. 6, 2013