Ronald Blain Nielsen

Aug. 18, 1932 - Sep. 21, 2021

Date of Service: Sep. 27, 2021

PAUL – Ronald Blain Nielsen, an 89-year-old resident of Paul, passed away peacefully in his sleep early in the morning of Tuesday, September 21, 2021.

Ronald was born on August 18, 1932, to Blain M and Ida E Nielsen in Paul, Idaho. It became obvious at an early age that he had a passion for horses and cattle. He talked of when he was a young boy that he would saddle up his mustang horse named Sally, and he would lope on her out North to the tracks and back. The amazing thing about it was that it was thirteen miles one way. He began working with his family on the farm and at the feedlot. He and his grandfather, Henry Manning, formed a very special bond since Ron was the first grandchild and they spent lots of time together. He always enjoyed working alongside his dad and his uncles, Howard, Lynn, Bee and Robert Manning. Back then the cattle were fed using teams of horses and wagons which had to be loaded by hand.

When in high school, he met the love of his life, Evelina Buckley, and they were married on November 22, 1950. They started their lives together in the little white house on the corner by the feedlot and while there they had their first two children, Barbara and Lynn. That house was later turned into what was called the office, which was mainly a place to get out of the cold. After that they moved to the home place at 150 North where they had their other three children, Dean, Ellen and Kim. Besides farming and feeding cattle, Ron worked for his dad managing the Valley Livestock Commission Yard for five years. He put in a lot of miles traveling around lining up the cattle for the weekly sale. He farmed with his dad for many years and his brothers, Bob and Richard would come home from college in the summers. Later he and Richard formed Nielsen Livestock Company, which they ran while also farming together for a few years until Richard decided he wanted to try something different. At this time Lynn and Dean joined their father in the business and later Ron and Dean continued the partnership together.

During the early years he joined the Cassia County Sheriff’s Mounted Posse where he met many great friends. It was there through the many competitions he competed in that he realized he had a love for racing horses. He started training his horses in the pasture behind the house and he turned the milk barn into a horse stable. He started out taking his horses to the fairs throughout Idaho. He also kept a few brood mares, and he raised some very nice colts. He later partnered with his dear friend, Dick Anderson, and they would load up the horses and go race them throughout the West. They raced at the fairs in Nevada (Ely and Elko), Montana (Great Falls and Billings) and other race tracks including Les Bois Park (Boise), Playfair (Spokane), Centennial (Denver) and usually would end the season at the fairs in California. Ron also loved chariot racing in the winter and, with the training he received early on in life driving teams of horses, he became a great hand with a team of chariot horses. He loved competing at the Worldwide Chariot Championships, and he partnered with many friends to compete at that level. Later, after he had quit training the horses himself, he and his son-in-law, Bruce Bean, partnered on several horses that they had in training at the big tracks in California. They raced at Hollywood Park, Santa Anita and Del Mar. He and Bruce would jump on a plane and go watch the horses run. They called them their twenty-four-hour trips and he said they did a lot of living on those trips. They enjoyed a lot of success, and the horses paid their own way.

He always fed the cattle when he was home, and you may have seen his feed truck in Paul at Zip Fer Gas taking a break with Bob and the boys. On a serious note, Dean says “My dad was always a master horseman, but he also had an eye for sorting fat cattle and was second to none and had the grade sheets proved that”. His last feedlot horse, and his favorite, was called Junior, and he was a one-man horse which was probably the reason was he was so athletic that he scared everyone else who tried to ride him.

Ron was inducted into the Southern Idaho Livestock Hall of Fame where he joined his father, grandfather, and his best friend, Dick Anderson. Later in life he became active in his church, in which he served as Bishop of the Paul Second Ward, and later served in the Paul Idaho Stake Presidency as a counselor. He also served in the Twin Falls Temple.

Ronald was preceded in death by his parents, Blain and Ida Nielsen; a brother, Richard Nielsen; a sister, Coleen Boulter; and a brother-in-law, Jerry Swensen. He is survived by his wife, Evelina Nielsen; three daughters, Barbara Bean (Bruce), Ellen Mabey (Terry) and Kim Prestridge (Mark); two sons, Lynn Nielsen (Diane) and Dean Nielsen (Jill); two sisters, Marilyn Swensen and Margaret Duff (Jack); and one brother, Bob Nielsen. He is also survived by 16 grandkids; 55 great-grandkids; and six great-great-grandkids.

The funeral will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, September 27, at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints - Paul Stake Center, located at 424 W. Ellis St., in Paul. Burial will follow at Paul Cemetery.

Friends may call from 5 until 7 p.m. Sunday, September 26, at Rasmussen-Wilson Funeral Home, 1350 E. 16th St., in Burley, and from 10 until 10:45 a.m. Monday, at the church preceding the funeral service.

A live webcast of the Funeral Service will be available and maintained at the following link: https://youtu.be/Q8K0nNTc6lo.