[Velma Nell Forester, better known as Nellie or Nana, died Monday afternoon, May 28, 2012. She was ninety-seven and would have been ninety-eight next week.
Nellie was born in Palestine, Texas on June 6, 1914, the only child of Juanita and John Scruggs. She moved to Galveston when she was seven years old and called the island her home for a lifetime.
As a young girl, she was a talented dancer who performed at many public events under the direction of Miss Melon. Always known for her outgoing personality, enjoyment of friendships, sense of humor, quick wit, flare for style, and good looks, she led a full and rewarding life. She was a voracious reader, a great cook and baker, and loved to shop and socialize. She could do anything she set her mind to.
In 1933, Nellie married the love of her life, Harry A. Forester, Jr. They enjoyed fifty-three wonderful years together as sweethearts and best friends until his death in 1986. They spent many Saturday nights dancing and dining at the Balinese Room.
As a young woman, she worked for the telephone company. During World War II, she was chief operator at the air base on the island. Later, she went to work at Robert I. Cohen’s Department Store working her way up to Ready-to-Wear buyer. After the store sold out to The Fair Co., she worked for Plantowsky’s Furniture where she became Service Manager.
When Nellie retired, she volunteered at Edgewater Retirement Center Gift Shop, The Rosenberg Library, and St. Peter’s Catholic Church. She and Harry relished being hands-on grandparents to their three grandsons, traveling extensively with them during summer vacations.
She was preceded in death by her husband, her grandson, Harry A. Forester, IV, and many family members and wonderful friends.
She was a faithful member of St. Peter’s the Apostle Church where she served as Eucharistic Minister, was active in the Altar Society, and was a member of the Sand Dollars. After Ike, she attended St. Patrick’s Church until she became infirmed.
Nellie is survived by her son, Harry A. Forester, III and daughter-in-law, Anne; her grandsons, Thomas Davis Forester and Kelly Patrick Forester; her grand daughter-in-law, Janice Forester; and her two great granddaughters, Erin Elizabeth
Forester and Emily Anne Forester.
A Funeral Mass will be held on Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 2:00 P.M. at St. Patrick Catholic Church. The family will receive visitors beginning at 1:00 PM. Services will be conducted by Deacon Sam Dell’Olio.
Pallbearers will be Thomas Forester; Kelly Forester; nephew, Anthony Forester; nieces, Kaye Forester and Debbie Gremillion; and Benny Davis.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Holy Family Parish, 1010 35th St., Galveston, TX 77550; Our Daily Bread, 2420 Winnie, Galveston, TX 77550 or Meals on Wheels, 2803 53rd Street, Galveston, TX 77551.
The family wishes to thank the Staff at Bayou Pines Care Center for the compassionate care they provided to Nellie for the past year and a half.
We’ll all miss Nellie. Hers was a life well-lived!