NELSON GEORGE COPELAND
February 15, 1957 ˜ December 26, 2020
Nelson was born in Compton, CA to Royal and Jean Copeland and lived in various parts of the US until settling in Vancouver, WA in 1969.
He graduated from Battle Ground High School in 1974 and some years later attained an AS degree from WSU. Nelson joined the US Navy in 1975 and served as gunnersmate missile first class for 12 years. He later joined the Air Force Reserve in 2005, during which time he served in Iraq and Qatar as a radar maintenance technician team lead. He retired in 2017 with a total of 24 years of military service. Nelson worked for Jenkon International as an information technologist for 17 years during his Naval Reserve status.
Nelson loved horses and was involved with the Clark County Fair Equestrian Center for 33 years. Most recently designated equestrian manager. There are so few people that contributed as much as Nelson did during his decades of service. His volunteer work to the equestrian community benefited to the lives of so many. He was on the Clark County Fair Mounted Patrol and involved in 4-H as well.
Nelson loved camping, hunting, scuba diving, woodworking, vintage cars, traveling, sports and miniature railroading. He was a lifetime member of VFW Post 7824 where he served as quartermaster, house committee chairman and was a member of the honor guard. Nelson was in charge of the monthly Scuttlebutt news bulletin, along with helping wherever he was needed at the post. He will be so missed by his VFW extended family.
Nelson is survived by his wife, Pam; parents, Chet and Jeanne Garrett; sons, Stephen Copeland, Jeremy Copeland (Cassandra); stepson, Jason Hutcheson (Abby); stepdaughter, Nikki McEllrath (Drew); sisters, Sheila Garrett (Bob), Anita Garrett; brothers, Butch Copeland (Mary), Chet Garrett Jr. (Toni) and Oliver Garrett; four grandsons, four granddaughters with another granddaughter on the way; several cousins, nieces, nephews, aunts and uncles.
He was preceded in death by his mother, Jean Thomson, and son, Kacy.
A celebration of life to be announced at a later date tentatively planned at the VFW. Donations may be made in Nelson’s name to VFW Post 7824.
We want to thank the nurses and doctors at PeaceHealth who took care of Nelson in his final weeks. He will be missed by all who knew him.
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