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In Memory of Nelson Vaughn


10:00 am - 11:00 am
Saturday January 22, 2022
First Reformed Church
1120 11th Avenue
Baldwin Wisconsin, 54002

Funeral Service

11:00 am
Saturday January 22, 2022
First Reformed Church
1120 11th Avenue
Baldwin Wisconsin, 54002

Nelson P. Vaughn, age 66, of Woodville, Wisconsin passed away at his home surrounded by family on Sunday, January 16, 2022. Nelson was born on October 22, 1955 in Wellington, Kansas to Paul and Nova (Kelly) Vaughn. He grew up in Black Forest and Colorado Springs, Colorado, and graduated from Woodland Park High School. Nelson attended tech school where he studied surveying and geographic information system mapping. From a previous marriage, Nelson was blessed with two daughters, Heidi and Hannah. On February 11, 1996, Nelson was united in marriage to Rebecca “Becky” Curtis at the Living Word Chapel in Forest, Wisconsin. He was the best husband and friend, as well as a strong support for Becky’s children, caring for, guiding, and loving them as his own. He often referred to them as his “second chance family.” Nelson worked for almost 20 years at the Washington County Surveyor’s Office in Stillwater, Minnesota before transferring to the county’s IT department where he spent seven years as a database administrator, before retiring for health reasons on January 4, 2022.


Nelson was a self-taught, accomplished guitarist and sang with a deep, resonant voice. One of his greatest joys was leading worship, especially with Crossroads Worship Band at First Reformed Church for 20 years. He enjoyed playing guitar and entertaining around the campfire with an eclectic taste for variety of music. Nelson enjoyed “horse camping” and trail riding, most confidently on his mount of 17 years, BlackJack. He was an animal lover and likely spoiled each of his dogs with too many treats.


Along with his love of the Word, he learned how to really live by following the 12 Steps. Nelson was a friend of Bill W. for 29 years.


In 2017, Nelson was diagnosed with lung cancer. He and Becky were saddened to receive this news, and after the struggle with acceptance, decided to actively “live until we die.” His passing came sooner than anticipated, as his body became resistant to the targeted medication therapy.


The pair was blessed with almost 26 years of marriage, being nearly inseparable. They considered themselves a “package deal” in all aspects of daily life, committed to following Jesus and leading worship with Crossroads, horseback riding with friends in many different beautiful states, and traveling across the U.S. as well as adventuring in Mexico. So many plans were made to continue the dream in retirement. We still trust that God has another plan.


Nelson will remain in the hearts of his wife and best friend, Rebecca “Becky” Curtis; Becky’s children, Jason Curtis, Anna (Ben) Holsteen, and Virginia Curtis; grandchildren, Caitlyn Curtis; Esther and Jude Holsteen; and brother, Douglas (Pat) Vaughn; and other relatives and friends. He is preceded in death by his parents, Paul and Nova Vaughn; and siblings, Dennis Vaughn and Nancy Vaughn.


A funeral service for Nelson will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, January 22, 2022 at the First Reformed Church, 1120 11th Ave., Baldwin, WI. Visitation will be held one hour prior to the service at the church. The service will be livestreamed through the church’s YouTube page. Interment will follow at the Baldwin Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to the family.

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Nelson's Tribute Wall

Tributes (8):

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    • I worked with Nelson for 20 years in the Washington County Surveyors Office. I’m so sorry to hear of his passing and my heart goes out to his friends and family. Rest in peace Nelson.

    • Growing up… my mother took us to Aunt Nova and Uncle Paul’s (Nelson’s parents) home as many summers as she could manage. Nelson always had his guitar and singing a song. My favourite place that he lived was a place in Devide Colorado. Nelson with his warm sweet smile. We will all miss you sweet cousin. Rest in peace, we will meet again some day.

    • I also knew Nelson growing up and was so saddened to hear of his passing. I remember being at a practice of the band Jeff mentioned, and can hear them playing “All Right Now” by Free in my head. Nelson had such a beautiful voice, and was instrumental in getting a bunch of us together to perform Jesus Christ Superstar when we were juniors in high school. I also remember him playing so many of the songs of the current bands back then on his guitar, like America, Cat Stevens, James Taylor and The Eagles. He was also so much fun and a good sport, like when our mutual friend Donna Canty (Blake today) talked the whole group into going to see the musical South Pacific in Colorado Springs, which the girls loved, but the guys not so much. The last time I saw him was at our 10th high school reunion, but was so glad to hear he had reconnected with Donna a couple of years ago and had found his soulmate Becky. I will never forget him, and am so grateful I was able to know him.

    • Becky and Family,
      My deepest sympathy to you all with Nelson’s passing. It was a blessing to have met you all and worked with you. May all the wonderful memories you hold dear of him comfort you always!
      Sending you my thoughts and prayers-
      Jamie Tinney,
      Lakeview Social Worker

    • I am grateful to have worked with Nelson for 26 years. From his parcel mapping to managing the Enterprise GIS database, we wouldn’t have the GIS we have today without him. Nelson brought a passion to everything from mapping to playing guitar. I loved our IT band that we put together and ended up playing during department events. He was always sharing ‘that next guitar he was looking at buying’ and we’d bring in our new finds to test out. He even taught me some new songs.
      Rest in Peace Nelson. You will be missed on so many levels.
      Happy Trails to you.

    • I too worked with Nelson AND share the same passion he had for horses! Ironically we ended up in Medora, ND at the same time a couple of years ago and enjoyed horse camping and trail riding in the badlands. I enjoyed and will miss our conversations (mostly about horses and camping) and working with him as well. Godspeed my friend and happy trails.

    • I worked with Nelson and I always enjoyed talking with him and asking him about horses. I appreciate that time. Rest in peace and God bless, Nelson. 🙏

    • Nelson was a good long-time friend. We started our friendship in Junior High – from playing in a (small time – very small time) rock-band together, to playing on the foot ball field and basketball court, we had a lot of fun. The four of us (Alan Hunt, Nelson Vaughn, Mike Elwell, and myself) were inseparable for years. Camping trips – stay overs – summer fun, it was always fun with Nelson being our group comedian. One evening many years ago I received a phone call from a number I didn’t recognize. It was at that point our friendship was reunited and I learned the path that Nelson had walked through since our last time together. From then on there were numerous phone calls, emails and photo sending to keep each other up to date. The one thing I now know – to protect me from his pain and illness – Nelson kept a lot of information about his cancer to himself. We just spoke less than a month ago (just prior to Christmas) and he told me all was good and he was winning this fight. He spoke of his upcoming retirement and moving to Arkansas – always very positive. You stayed strong my friend, you did it your way, I expected nothing less. Rest in Peace my Good Friend Nelson – God Bless.