American Veteran 01

John Burton Nelson

January 1, 1939 ~ August 21, 2022 (age 83)


         It is with a heavy heart that we announce the passing of John Burton Nelson.

John was born January 1, 1939 and departed this earth after 83 full memorious years of life on August 21, 2022. John Nelson was born in Clearwater, Florida and moved at a young age to Auburn, Washington where he spent his elementary years growing up with his parents Kay and Martin Klontz. He and his family then relocated to Balboa, Panama during his high school years. During this time, he spent his days attending school and exploring the jungles and rivers of Panama, building upon his love for the outdoors with every swing of his machete, every river fished, and every hammock slept in under the night sky.

       It was after the completion of high school that John made yet another life change when he returned to Auburn to attend Green River Community College before then joining the United States Air Force during the Vietnam era in 1959 and working as an aircraft/missile mechanic until he was honorably discharged from service in 1963. After this point he then met and married Clarissa Wedeking on April 25, 1964, in Topeka, Kansas. They later moved here to the Enumclaw Plateau in Washington state to put down roots, start a family, and ultimately establish their home together. John continued his progression in life by attending the University of Washington, working for Boeing, and later working at Mutual of Enumclaw as an insurance underwriter until his retirement.

       When John wasn’t working, he would continue his love for the outdoors by becoming an avid hiker, camper, and mountain climber, summiting many of the peaks in the Cascade and Olympic mountains that we see today to include Mt. Rainier. His love for the outdoors was not lost on his family as he shared these moments with them every chance he could as they continued to grow older each year. In his later years after retirement and no longer climbing mountains he would spend his time drinking coffee at his favorite coffee houses, telling endless stories of growing up, chatting about his favorite John Wayne movies, the book he was reading, the video game he played the night before, or simply sipping wine with Clarissa at their favorite wineries as they planned their next vacation destination.

       Traveling with his children and grandchildren soon became his new passion in life as well as the building blocks for many years of memories not soon forgotten. So finally, we have come to this, like all strongly built campfires encircled in stones, with flames that burn so bright and so powerful they too will eventually burn out and smolder in the night.  Today John is that flame and his family are those stones encircling him in his final rest. John is survived by his wife Clarissa, three daughters, two sons, six grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. John will be greatly missed by friends and family alike.


Service Date, Time, and Location:

Tuesday 13 September 2022

9:30 A.M.

Tahoma National Cemetery

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Memorial Tree
A Memorial Tree was planted for John

We are deeply sorry for your loss - the staff at Weeks' Funeral Home

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September 13, 2022

9:30 AM
Tahoma National Cemetery
18600 240th St
Kent, WA 98042

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