Theodore C. Nelson
Theodore C. Nelson, 89, of Iowa City, Iowa, died Saturday, May 9, 2020, at the Oaknoll Retirement Residence in Iowa City.
Ted was born Jan. 6, 1931, in Hartford, Conn., to R. Winthop and Mabel K. Nelson. Living in a house built by his grandfather in West Hartford, he attended local schools and then followed his older brother to the Loomis School (now Loomis Chaffee) in Windsor, Conn., and then to Harvard College in Cambridge, Mass., from which he graduated in 1952.
Having enlisted in the U.S. Army, Ted graduated from the Army Language School in Monterey, Calif., after which he served with the U.S. Army in Germany until 1955. He spent a summer at Middlebury, Vermont, in the Intensive Russian Language Program, and then earned an M.A. degree in Russian Studies from the University of Minnesota in 1956. His marriage to Elizabeth Erickson, in summer 1956, ended in divorce in 1957.
Ted was accepted as a Foreign Service Officer at the U.S. Department of State in summer 1956 and moved to Washington, D.C., where he served until 1959. Ted married Margaret Moeller in 1959, and the couple moved to Ted's first overseas posting, at the U.S. Consulate in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia, where his first son was born. Ted's next posting, 1961-64, was to the U.S. Embassy in Pretoria, Republic of South Africa, where his second and third sons were born. After studying Hungarian at the Department of State's Foreign Service Institute in Washington, Ted was posted to the U.S. Legation in Budapest, Hungary, 1965-67.
After three years in Washington, D.C., Ted earned a M.S.P.H. in Population Affairs at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, N.C., 1970-71, after which he returned to Washington, D.C., for a year. He was then seconded to the United Nations and served as the Coordinator of the United Nations Fund for Population Activities in Tehran, Iran, 1972-74, and in Kabul, Afghanistan, 1974-76. He returned to the State Department 1976 to 1983.
Retiring from the State Department in 1983, Ted was a very active volunteer at Youth for Understanding, an international exchange program for high school students. Moving to Iowa City, Iowa, in 1988, Ted soon became involved with the TASP (Teaching Assistant/Simulated Patient) program at the UI College of Medicine, retiring in 2000.
In his later working years and in retirement, Ted and his wife traveled extensively. They moved to the Oaknoll Retirement Residence in 2011.
Ted is survived by his older brother, Win; his wife, Margaret; and his sons, Andrew (Teresa), Jeffrey and Brian (Claudia).
Ted deeded his body to the UI College of Medicine. No memorial service is planned.