Hello fellow RHS “Teddies”. To honor my brother Chet, I thought I’d write a short tribute.
After high school Chet continued his love for theater and enrolled at St Cloud State. He continued to study theater and became interested in karate and Eastern religion.
Chet became a postal employee in the late 1970’s and worked at the downtown post office distribution department. He was elected into leadership rolls as department representative and union representative. Chet owned a home in Minneapolis while he continued to work at the post office.
Chet had fallen in love with north central Minnesota, specifically the area west of Pequot Lakes, MN, and continued to attend parties there during breaks from the post office. He bought 47 acres of land in Maple Township west of Pequot Lakes, and enjoyed several years of ownership at his “Tick Hill” weekend retreat. He hosted annual full moon bonfire parties. At these parties, Chet would dance and recite Shakespeare. Tick Hill had a primitive cabin, no electricity, no indoor plumbing and that was just the way Chet liked it. He also had two horses and dogs and cats. Chet wrote poetry while he would sit in the woods. He loved his special spot up north. I was able to join Chet at Tick Hill a couple times and he introduced me to deer hunting.
Tragically, Chet’s life came to an end in August of 1984. Chet had traveled north after working the 11pm to 7am shift at the Post Office. He helped his friend build a field stone cabin foundation that day and had been awake for more than 30 hours. He perished in a fire early that morning. Authorities tell us he probably fell asleep and never knew the cabin was on fire.
Chet was a loving son and uncle. His legacy and love of Tick Hill has continued through my family’s love of the land there. Recently I was able to give a short tour to your fellow classmate Dave Jones. Dave was one of Chet’s close friends in high school.
I miss Chet and wish he were with you at your 50th reunion. I’m sure the Shakespeare lines would be flowing at some point that evening.
Enjoy your reunion.
Chip Nelson RHS 67