Ellen Nelson Bearden
Ellen Nelson Bearden, of Little Rock died on Thursday, July 28, 2005. A lifetime resident of Arkansas, she was the wife of Methodist Minister Robert E. L. Bearden, Jr.. She was born at Russellville, AR to Mary Larch Nelson and Olaf S. Nelson.
She was graduated with an A.B. Degree from Duke University. Previously she attended Russellville Public Schools and Arkansas Tech University, where she served as a member of the Board of Trustees for six years. As a Duke Alumna, for many years she chaired the Little Rock Area Alumni Advisory Committee, where they interviewed applicants for admission to Duke.
A former legal secretary, she was employed with the Arkansas Supreme Court. A member of St. James United Methodist Church, she was honored along with her husband by the church's funding of the Robert E. L. and Ellen Bearden Scholarship at Hendrix College. A Scholarship at Henderson State University also honors the couple. As a former officer in District and Conference Methodist Women's organizations, she received the Life Member designation.
Active in community organizations for many years in Little Rock, she served the Florence Crittenton Home Auxiliary as Secretary, and was a volunteer at the Arkansas Arts Center for the Decorative Arts Forum, the Library and the Committee on Call. She was also a Literacy Training volunteer. Other memberships included the P.E.O. Sisterhood, Arkansas Native Plant Society, Quapaw Quarter Association, Little Rock Women's Golf Association, Arkopolis Questers, Wildflower Garden Club and National Democratic Party. She was active in Arts and Crafts Exhibitions receiving awards at the War Eagle Fairs.
Mrs. Bearden was predeceased by her son, Robert Nelson Bearden in 1980, and by her only sibling, O.W.(Ozzie) Nelson of Russellville in 1998. She is survived by one daughter, Clare Connally and her husband Kirkland, one granddaughter, Kimberly Dee Connally Munoz and her husband, Tony and their children Diego and Isabel all of Dallas, a niece, Nancy Nelson Pittman and her husband Tom and their sons Tripp and Trent of Plano, TX; a nephew, Bill Nelson and his wife, Andrea and their children, Jake, Whitney, Morgan and Jon all of Russellville, and many cousins in the state of Washington and in Sweden.
A memorial service will be held at First United Methodist Church, Little Rock at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday with burial prior to the service at 10:30 a.m. in Mt. Holly Cemetery. The Rev. Michael Mattox, the Rev. Fred Haustein, and the Rev. Ed Matthews will officiate.
Memorials may be made to the Bearden Scholarship Funds at either Hendrix College or Henderson State University. The family gratefully acknowledges the Christian love and support of so many, among them caregivers, Florence Pierce and Diann Myron.
Arrangements are by Ruebel Funeral Home, www.ruebelfuneralhome.com.