Waltraut Nelson

Obituary of Waltraut Nelson

In celebration of the vibrant life of Waltraut “Oma” Nelson, who gracefully departed on April 25, 2024, surrounded by the serene embrace of her beloved home on Lake Barcroft in Falls Church, Virginia, we find solace in reminiscing on the joy she brought to our lives. Born in Germany in 1929 to Christlieb and Elisabeth Hameister, Waltraut's journey through life was a testament to resilience, love, and the pursuit of knowledge.

After immigrating to the United States, Waltraut attended the University of Minnesota to study the Sister Kenny method of treating polio patients, where she met the love of her life, Francis Nelson. Together, they settled in Washington DC, raising their son, Peter, and building a life grounded in shared values and unwavering promises. Waltraut continued her education, earning her Master of Art in German Studies from American University.

Oma dedicated 25 years to nurturing young minds as a beloved German and Biology teacher for Fairfax County Public Schools. Her classroom was not just a place of learning but an opportunity for exploration, where her students discovered the beauty of culture and science under her guidance. With enthusiasm, she organized German cultural events, sponsored the German folk dancing club, and warmly welcomed exchange students, fostering a global community of understanding and friendship.

Oma's vibrant spirit extended far beyond the classroom, shaping her into an integral member of the Academy of Senior Professionals at Eckerd College for three decades. There, she thrived in thought-provoking discussions and cherished social connections. As a founding member of the Lake Barcroft Village, she immersed herself in the camaraderie of social gatherings, memoir workshops, and the beloved Coffee and Conversation tradition.

In her travels, Waltraut discovered the wonders of life, finding immense joy in immersive cultural experiences on every continent except Antarctica. An avid photographer, she captured the essence of each destination, preserving and sharing memories that enriched her understanding of the world.

Her love for water was evident in her life at Lake Barcroft, where she found solace and inspiration. Whether swimming or gazing at its reflective surface, water was her sanctuary, shaping her outlook and enriching her experiences. She often found joy in the presence of the geese that frequented the lake, their graceful movements and melodic calls adding to the tranquility of her surroundings.

Family and friends were central to Waltraut's life. From her beloved granddaughter Melanie and great-grandson Ethan to cherished relatives Lee and Sylvia, she embraced all who crossed her path with warmth and love.

As we bid farewell to Oma, we hold onto memories of her infectious laughter, unwavering support, and boundless curiosity. In her final moments, she expressed her love with the words "I love you, but not goodbye" and we carry that love in our hearts.

In lieu of flowers, we invite you to honor Oma's legacy by donating to Vitas (part of Hospice).  Tax-deductible checks can be made payable to:

Vitas Community Connection

C/O Vitas Healthcare

1604 Spring Hill Road, Suite 250

Vienna, VA 22182

Oma's burial information is forthcoming, as she will find her final resting place at Arlington Cemetery.

To plant a beautiful memorial tree in memory of Waltraut Nelson, please visit our Tree Store
A Memorial Tree was planted for Waltraut
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Advent Funeral and Cremation Services - Falls Church
Share Your Memory of