Jimmy Ray Nelson, beloved friend to many, passed away on March 22, 2021 at the age of 71. He is survived by his sisters, Wendy Gibson and Sharon Liggett. He was born in Norfolk, Nebraska on July 26, 1949.
Jimmy served as an active-duty Rifleman in the Marine Corps in the Vietnam War from 1968 – 1969, earning the rank of Corporal, followed by serving 4 years in the Marine Corps Reserves. During his service he earned the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Campaign Medal with Device, the Vietnam Service Medal with 1 Star, a Combat Action Ribbon, and the Meritorious Mast.
From there, Jimmy went to college at St. Mary’s College in Nebraska from 1969 - 1974 and earned his bachelor’s degree in Respiratory Therapy, earning the titles of Certified Respiratory Therapist and Respiratory Care Practitioner. He served as a Respiratory Therapist for over 40 years, helping and touching hundreds of lives in the process.
Jimmy was the definition of selfless and caring. All who knew him know he was cut and dry with a cynical sense of humor but would be there for those he cared about at a moment’s notice. He genuinely cared about the well-being of others, which was reflected not only in his words, but in the many generous gifts and deeds done for all.
He donated to several causes and charities, including the Marine Corps Association and Foundation, the Disabled American Veteran Foundation, the Wyoming Highway Patrol, and the Wyoming Special Olympics.
He had a passion for guns, tequila and Native American artifacts which he reproduced by hand of the highest quality, and which he often shared with any and all around him. Any chance to buy a new gun or take a swig of good tequila, he would do it without hesitation.
Jimmy was a proud Veteran of the US Marine Corps, a patriot, an exceptional friend, and considered to be family by many. He was a great man whose influence will forever be felt by everyone that loved him, and all of whom know that they will see each other again. He will be dearly missed.
Services will be held on Saturday, April 17th at Valley Mortuary at 3:00 pm.