Richard Nelson

Richard V. W. Nelson

Tuesday, January 23rd, 1940 - Thursday, April 30th, 2020
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Richard V.W. Nelson of Spring Lake passed away on Thursday, April 30, 2020, with his family at his bedside. He leaves behind his devoted wife of fifty years, Barbara (nee Cantelmo) Nelson; his loving children, Christopher Andreach and wife Lauren, Lynne Andreach Schwarz and husband Steven, Eric Nelson and wife Mildred; and four cherished grandchildren, Scott and William Schwarz and Madeline and Natalie Andreach. He was predeceased by his parents, Godfrey N. and Helen (nee Hetzer) Nelson; his brothers, David, Frederick and Gibson; and his granddaughter, Stefanie Schwarz.

Born in Westfield, he had resided in Point Pleasant Beach for many years before moving to Spring Lake 27 years ago. He was a successful entrepreneur, an accomplished artist, a garden train enthusiast, the consummate well-dressed man and a lifelong (often anonymous) philanthropist.

In the early 1970s, Richard dreamed of starting a company driven by ethics, creativity and a commitment to excellence, an organization where employees’ ideas and talents could flourish. Tapping into his entrepreneurial spirit and bolstered by his vision, he founded Impact Unlimited and pursued his goal of success. He equally relished the success and advancement of employees in his organization, many of whom were employees for over thirty years. When he sold the Company in 2015, what began as a local tradeshow exhibit producer had grown into a worldwide interactive marketing and communications firm.

Recognized by many trade organizations and publications as an authority on industry trends, he created standards for client management programs, international exhibiting and integrated marketing. In the late 1980s, he was recognized by a trade publication as one of the most influential designers in the industry. He was also an accomplished photographer and artist.

As a natural progression from design, Richard started painting in 1987. He studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, the Art Students League of New York and with Daniel E. Greene, N.A., at his studio in North Salem, NY. He was a member of the Portrait Society of America, a lifetime member of the Ridgewood Art Institute and an exhibiting member of the Guild of Creative Arts in Shrewsbury, NJ. He loved painting landscapes in Maine and found ready subjects in his garden, along roadsides and among his family.

In Spring Lake, he made many lifelong friends and is known for the projects and fashion shows he art-directed at the Spring Lake Bath & Tennis Club, his commitment to the Green Gables Croquet Club, his garden train shows to benefit the Spring Lake Garden Club, as well as his involvement in the facilities beautification at Bears Paw Country Club in Naples, FL.

He will be loved and remembered by his family and friends. A memorial service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, contributions to the Jersey Shore University Medical Center Foundation, 1340 Campus Parkway, Building C, Unit 4, Neptune, NJ 07753 or to The Artists’ Fellowship, Inc., 47 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10003 would be most appreciated.

Private funeral arrangements are under the direction of the O’Brien Funeral Home, Wall Twp., NJ with entombment to be in St. Anne’s Cemetery, Wall Twp., NJ.

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Service Details

  • Service

    O'Brien Funeral Home - Wall
    2028 NJ-35
    WALL, NJ 07719
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Interment

    St. Anne's Cemetery
    1610 Allenwood Road
    WALL, NJ 07719
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Christopher Anderson

Posted at 02:21pm
Condolences from the Anderson family to all. Dick was one of my late father Don's all time favorite people and Dad would spare no detail in explaining why Dick was such a fine person when the topic of him ever came up. Dick always had a clear expression of genuine interest in anyone he spoke with and certainly set the best example for how fantastic people can be.

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