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Thank you for your support during this difficult time. Please enhance this tribute to Irene by adding your memories and photos.

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Kotrba-Smith Funeral Home

Kotrba-Smith Funeral Home
101 Gerkin
Gregory, SD 57533
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Memories & Candles

“Irene was a good friend to me and a great neighbor very postive and kind I do miss her ”
1 of 8 | Posted by: Dan McIntyre - Yankton, SD

“Irene was a friend of our grandparents (John & Irene Kahler). She was always so kind. Thoughts and prayers to the family at this time. ”
2 of 8 | Posted by: Abby & Arthur Mueller - Mitchell, SD

“The Nelsons were next door neighbors to my parents, Ross & Mabel Greer for many years. They were so kind when Ross passed and again when Leann (Dan...Read More »
3 of 8 | Posted by: Alta Greer Empkey - Omaha, NE

“I want to say thank you to all of the people that respond to this memory book. The family appreciate all the kind loving thoughts. ”
4 of 8 | Posted by: Corey Nelson - Watertown and, SD

“Irene was my dad's cousin. I have fond memories of Irene. When I was a child, I would travel with my mom and dad, Marie & George Fleming, to...Read More »
5 of 8 | Posted by: Pearl Ann (Fleming) Sorensen - NE

“Corey, Sandy & Nelson Family,Thinking of you all during this sad time. Many sympathies; please know that you and your family are in our thoughts and...Read More »
6 of 8 | Posted by: Heidi Schooley - Watertown, SD

“Irene was a friend of my Grandparents; always friendly and kind. Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers. ”
7 of 8 | Posted by: Michelle Kahler Payne - SD

“To the Nelson family My sincere sympathy for the loss of your mom. She had such a sweet spirit. A smile to brighten everybody's day ! Keeping you...Read More »
8 of 8 | Posted by: Carol (Smith) Booze - Fremont, NE


Irene June Pospisil was born June 17, 1931 on the family farm south of Gregory, the only surviving child of Charles Pospisil and Emma (Stejskal) Pospisil. She grew up on the farm but attended elementary and high school in Gregory, riding the bus to school over the muddy roads enduring the difficult conditions during the depression years.

After graduating from Gregory High School in 1949 she stayed on the farm and helped her parents. Her elderly grandmother also lived with them for awhile when Irene was growing up and she helped with her care.

Sabroe Nelson and Irene were married on August 22, 1951 and the couple made their home on the farm. At this time Irene joined St. John Lutheran Church in Gregory and remained thankfully faithful to her Savior.

Irene and Sabroe started their family with the birth of Lorraine in 1952 and in 1953 Morris was born. Shortly after the birth of Morris, Irene contracted polio and spent four months in the hospital in Sioux Falls. Although she recovered, the disease left her with physical difficulties which challenged her entire life.

In 1959 Sherry joined the family and they moved into Gregory. In 1969 Corey completed the Nelson family. Irene was a typical farm wife raising the children and helping Sabroe when possible.

Irene enjoyed being in town as it provided her with many social opportunities. She was particularly interested in her Czech heritage and spent many happy hours promoting the ZCBJ Lodge. (Western Fraternal Life Association). She received national recognition from that group for enrolling members into the insurance program. Irene was active for many years working with the Hospital Auxiliary Rummage Center, an activity which provided her with many social contacts much to her enjoyment. Selling Avon products was another activity which allowed her to interact with many people. Irene also wrote local news for the Gregory Times-Advocate and Winner Advocate for many years.

Her husband Sabroe died in September 1991, and Irene remained in their home and continued her many activities. Having coffee time with friends became a real treat that she eagerly anticipated daily.

Lately her eye sight began to fail and getting around became difficult. She entered her eternal rest unexpectedly at her home on April 29, 2017, at the age of 85 years.

Irene is survived by her four children: Lorraine (husband Don) Cihak of Gregory, Morris (wife Bev) of Portland, OR, Sherry (husband Rick) Yeigh of Sioux Falls, SD, and Corey (wife Sandy) of Watertown, SD, seven grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her husband Sabroe, and her parents.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Funeral services for Irene Nelson, 85, of Gregory, were held on Saturday, May 6, 2017, at 10:30 a.m. at St. John Lutheran Church in Gregory, SD with Pastor Marcus Ring officiating. A visitation was held Friday evening at Kotrba-Smith Funeral Home.

Music was provided by Melanie Hannahs, organist, and Geoff Smith, soloist, singing "On Eagles Wings." Congregational hymns were "Amazing Grace," "Jerusalem the Golden," and "I'm But a Stranger Here."

Ev Jess was in charge of registration.

Casket Bearers were Jody Brozik, Chris Considine, Lewis Parkis, Kayleb Brozik, Morris Nelson, and Corey Nelson.

Interment was in the Bohemian National Cemetery, Gregory, SD.