Obituary of Richard Francis Nelson
Richard “Rich” Francis Nelson, devoted son, beloved brother, and loving uncle, passed away on September 1, 2023. Born on August 6, 1956, in Joliet, Illinois to Herbert and Marjorie (Anson), he attended St. Patrick Grade School and Joliet Catholic High School, where he was a star center for the football team. Rich received a BS in Psychology from Creighton University and a Juris Doctorate from Creighton University School of Law; he was a member of the Creighton Law Review and Moot Court. After graduation, Rich settled in Chicago and quickly became an expert in its fascinating history and beautiful architecture. He was admitted to the Illinois State Bar, the New York State Bar, and the United States District Court, Northern District of Illinois. Rich was a preeminent labor lawyer for over 30 years.
As a member of the Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity, he served as Archon on the Executive Council and later was appointed the National Attorney General. Rich was a lover of books and avidly read everything from History to Russian Literature to Detective Stories; he was a natural orator and a keen wordsmith.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Herbert and Marjorie; his grandparents, William and Jean (Hennessey) Anson, John and Nell (Quigley) Nelson; and numerous aunts and uncles.
Deeply and sadly left to mourn are Rich’s family, his brother, Bill (Michelle); and sisters, Jeannie (Dan) Nelson, Kathleen Nelson (John Colbert); 10 nieces and nephews, Matt (Krista) Nelson, Colleen (Matt) Van Egeren, Caitlin (Evan) Lloyd; Danny (Bekki) Nelson, John Nelson (Angela Tinney), Maggie (Cade) Rhoden, Nicholas Nelson, Molly (Gervin) Behr; Jack and Charlie Colbert; 17 great-nieces and nephews; and special friend, Dr. Mary Jo Filippini.
A Memorial gathering for Richard “Rich” Francis Nelson will be held on Saturday, September 16, 2023, at St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church, 18 Woodlawn Avenue, Joliet, from 10:30 a.m. until a Memorial Mass of Christian Burial begins at 11:30 a.m. As it was Rich’s wish, cremation rites have been accorded and inurnment will follow mass at Resurrection Cemetery in Romeoville, IL.
For more information, please call 815-741-5500 or visit his Memorial Tribute at www.fredcdames.com where you can share a favorite memory or leave an online condolence.
Memorial Mass of Christian Burial
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