Dianne Vivian Nelson, 74, of Albany, Ore. died on Oct. 13, 2023.

     Dianne was born on March 31, 1949. She was adopted by Curtis and Vivian Nelson. Dianne was raised in Whiskey Hill, Ore. and attended Whiskey Hill School. She graduated from Canby High School in 1967.

Photo courtesy of Jennifer Gerger

     After graduating high school, she held numerous jobs from truck driving to a pickle inspector for Nalley’s Pickles. She catered for John Bauer Concert Productions and was a home health caregiver. Ultimately, her favorite career was owning her pet boarding company, Porcupine Pampered Pets in Haines, Alaska.

     She lived her life here in Oregon until 1994 when she moved to Mosquito Lake, Alaska. She built a family of friends up there who still to this day love her deeply. She was very involved with Haines Animal Rescue Kennel (HARK). Every member of her community remembers her as the holiday tree lady. At Christmas and Easter she would decorate the same tree along the Haines Highway late at night so no one would see her. She kept it a secret for the 20 years she lived up there before revealing it was her doing.

     Dianne moved back to Oregon in 2014 to be close to family. She loved watching her grandkids in school functions and sports. Taking them on road trips to the coast or riding the carousel in Albany, Ore. She enjoyed baking, canning, and gardening to share with her family and friends.

Dianne was preceded in death by her parents Vivian and Curtis Nelson, brothers Michael Nelson and Steve King. She is survived by biological father, John King of California, daughter Jennifer Gerger (Gary) of Kentucky, son Chris Kauffman of Alaska, daughter Meghan Tompkins (Garrett) of Tennessee. Grandchildren Jeff (Breanna) Wegner, Patrick (Tatiana) Wegner, Matthew Wegner, Brian Kyllo, Brianna Kauffman, Connor Phillips, Emma Tompkins, and Vivian Kauffman. Great-grandchildren Jillian, Jeffery, Greyson, Emma, and Elijah. Sisters Rhonda Kendrick, Wanda Johnson, and Shauna Sheppard, aunt Arlana Pate, brothers Jeff King, Greg King, Tom King and John King. The fur baby loves of her life, Mitzie and Hawkeye Filbert, who miss her dearly.

     Our mom, sister, daughter, grandma, granny, niece, was a force! Strong and courageous. We will miss her in every fiber of our being.

     In lieu of flowers, please donate to her favorite animal shelter, Safe Haven, in her memory, or a favorite animal shelter of your own. A celebration of life will be held in Albany, Ore. on April 6. 

Obituary submitted by Jennifer Gerger