Cover photo for Nelson Ray Eddy's Obituary
Nelson Ray Eddy Profile Photo

Nelson Ray Eddy

February 20, 1938 — May 20, 2023


Nelson Ray Eddy

Nelson was born in Akron, OH to Robert Paul and Erma Ruth Eddy (nee Cheadle), the younger sibling to James and Lois, both deceased. Raised a stoic, Nelson had a love for all-things-airplanes, sports, and what is now known as STEM. The Air Force rejected him as a pilot, allegedly due to flat feet, ironically, as he was a standout baseball, basketball, and football player. He was invited to play tailback at the University of Michigan, but his pragmatic side led him to actually play at the University of Akron where he proudly proclaimed, "I never dropped a pass my senior year." It could not be confirmed how many passes were thrown to him, but his yearbook shows "Golden Toe Nelson Eddy" being carried off the field after kicking the extra point to win the homecoming game as major underdogs with just seconds remaining on the game clock. After graduating with a degree in education, Nelson went on to coach, teach, and found a model airplane club at Norton HS, as well as frame houses in the summer, establishing himself as a polymath. Last, but not least, he met Terri there and they started a family.

Always seeking to learn, and perhaps bitten by wanderlust, Nelson spent the summers of '65-'67 earning his M.S. Ed. at Seattle University. Having fallen in love with "The Mountain" and the Pacific Northwest, he took a job at Fife HS and the family moved to Puyallup in '68. He taught math and Physics there for thirty years, where he also coached football, basketball, and softball. At the same time, he raised two boys, designed and built their house, and was recognized as both one of the nation's premier Radio Control airplane builders and racers.

After retiring, he remodeled his house in Lacey and worked in a model shop until his mid 70s when he started showing signs of memory loss. Son Mike lived with him part-time for the past two-and-half years as his caregiver before he succumbed to dementia. Nelson was viewed as having high academic, athletic, and ethical standards by most; but his students, family, and friends will remember him for his dad jokes, playful ribbing, penchant for solving problems and puzzles, fixing anything, and being there when no one else would be. His presence is sorely missed, but his legacy lives on amongst friends and family. He is survived by two sons, Mike in Seattle and David in South Carolina, their mother Terri in Milton, Mike's children, Paloma, Kylei, and Lincoln, and David's boys Benjamin, Jeremiah, Daniel, and Elijah. Nelson is a tissue donor to The Human Brain and Spinal Fluid Resource Center, which welcomes donations in his name to research prevention and mitigation of dementia for patients and their loved ones.

Please enjoy the photos below. There is no way to caption them, but if you right-click and save image as... you can see timestamps and other contextual information. Please add your own memories to the guestbook below. Email eddynr53 at gmail with any questions.

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