Cover photo for Sondra LaRue Nelson's Obituary
Sondra LaRue Nelson Profile Photo
1942 Sondra 2021

Sondra LaRue Nelson

March 18, 1942 — June 23, 2021

Sondra LaRue Nelson March 18, 1942 – June 23, 2021 “Actually, the best gift you could have given her was a lifetime of adventures.” Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland Sondra was born on March 18, 1942 in Culver City, California. She died on June 23, 2021 in Rush City, Minnesota. She attended Oroville High School in Oroville, CA, and attended junior college in northern California. Sondra was a very independent, brave and passionate traveler. She would spend weeks every year extensively exploring countries and continents while learning new things and eating different foods. Her favorite country was Switzerland, and she considered it to be her second home. Her travels took her to most of the major continents and island nations, including South America, New Zealand, Russia, all of the European countries, Scandinavia and Africa. Some of her recent trips included Portugal (with her daughter Christine), Morocco, Malta, Croatia, Slovakia and Africa (with her sister Priscilla). Sondra’s interests also included reading books about World War II, especially focusing on strong women who led the resistance or worked for the allied governments. Her fascination with spy stories involved reading many books and researching authentic historic figures. She had a tremendous love of classical music, books, and movies, and she always enjoyed eating out with friends while having good conversations about travel and current events. For 15 years, Sondra lived full-time in her RV, making friends all over the United States. She became a Mary Kay Director while on the road and had over 300 customers/friends who she valued deeply. Even though she had never lived in Minnesota, she decided to purchase a lake home here in 2013 to be near family. Sondra still continued to travel on the road with her RV and fly off to many adventures in other countries. She believed in arts, civil rights, and education, and she frequently donated to PBS, NPR, and the Southern Poverty Law Center. Prior to going on the road with her RV, Sondra’s career included working as an executive level assistant in San Francisco, Houston and Washington, DC. She also was a single mom to her daughters, Carole and Christine. Sondra leaves behind many, many friends that she has loved and cherished over the years. She had a knack for making friends everywhere and always liked to sit next to strangers on a Swiss train to start up a conversation. She will be dearly missed by her daughter Christine (Paul) Sofka; grandsons Andrew and Stephen Sofka all from Houston, TX; granddaughter Christina Schaefer of Renton, WA; brothers Clair (Helen Marie) Nelson from Soddy Daisy, TN and Dr. Stuart (Linda) Nelson from Vienna, VA; sisters Priscilla (Frank) Mitchell of Rush City, MN; and recently discovered and beloved half-sister Dixie (Jeff) Evans of Hattiesburg, MS; many nieces, nephews; great-nieces and great-nephews. Sondra was preceded in death by her adored grandmother Lena Gibson; parents Clair and Ruth Nelson; brothers Dan, Greg and Neil; daughter Carole; and birth father Harry L. Roland. Memorials may be sent to The Mary Kay Foundation whose mission is to eliminate cancers affecting women and ending domestic violence. www.marykayfoundation.org A celebration of life open house will be held for Sondra on Thursday, July 22 from 2-6 PM at her home on Rush Lake. Arrangements are entrusted to the: Funeral And Cremation Service of Rush City~Olson Chapel. www.FuneralAndCremationService.com
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