Cover photo for Carolyn Cowley Nielsen's Obituary
Carolyn Cowley Nielsen Profile Photo
1948 Carolyn 2023

Carolyn Cowley Nielsen

July 18, 1948 — April 24, 2023

 

Our beloved matriarch, Carolyn Nielsen, embarked on her eternal repose, Monday, April 24, 2023 in Chandler Arizona. Carolyn was born into the loving home of Graham Lewis Cowley, Jr. and Eva Lee Cowley on July 18th of 1948 as the sixth of eight children. She was blessed to be born in a time of peace following the tumultuous years of the Second World War, which peace would become a key characteristic of her many enviable attributes.

Education was a lifelong passion for Carolyn. In her early years she had a profound love of learning and a love of her classmates. Her drive and hard work ensured she was one of the top of her class and as a result she graduated in only three years as a junior.

Carolyn married her husband and lifelong friend, Lawson Z Nielsen on March 23rd of 1965 and was sealed to him for time and all eternity in the Mesa Arizona Temple in 1987. One year later in 1988 she finished her college career; graduating magna cum laude with a degree in Special Education from Northern Arizona University while maintaining an A+ average during her time there.

Among her numerous titles, few were as important as her role as a teacher. Carolyn served the community as a special education teacher at St. Johns Unified School District for the majority of her professional career. She rounded out her illustrious and successful teaching profession with her final four years dedicated to the Arizona School for the Deaf and Blind. Her gentle, patient nature and love of those around her won the hearts of her colleagues and contributed to the educational development and emotional well-being of her students. Her children and grandchildren can attest to the many times she would be sought out in public by those who had been touched by her as a result of the selfless work she did.

Carolyn was very much a steward of the earth; she could often be found attending to and cultivating her gardens. Her love of the natural world and the hard work to care for it were passed on to her children and grandchildren. She was often happiest when in nature; exploring the countryside, admiring the full moon or rising early to catch the first light of the sunrise.

Perhaps her greatest achievement was in her devotion to and similitude of the Savior, Jesus Christ. His teachings were a core part of her personal identity, demonstrable in the way she interacted with all people. As a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints she served diligently in her church callings and assignments; holding several positions of influence from teacher to president in the Primary and Relief Society programs at both the ward and stake level. She loved fiercely, laughed often, helped those in need and endured to the end. She will be sorely missed.

Carolyn is survived by her siblings, Lewis Cowley, Sylvia Udall, Lee Madrid, Trey Cowley, living children, Frederick (Sandra) Nielsen, Kirstin (Spence) Udall, Rachel (Rob) Foxcroft, Christoffer (Keirsten) Nielsen and Cassidy (Julie) Nielsen. In her wake are 22 grandchildren and 18 great-grandchildren with more on the way as her family tree continues to mature from now and forevermore.

A funeral service will be held Saturday, April 29, 2023 at 10:00 a.m. at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, St. Johns Downtown building, with visitation one hour prior. Interment will follow the services at the St. Johns Westside Cemetery.


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Service Schedule

Past Services

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Saturday, April 29, 2023

9:00 - 9:45 am (Eastern time)

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, St. Johns Downtown Building

, St. John's, NL

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Funeral Service

Saturday, April 29, 2023

Starts at 10:00 am (Eastern time)

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, St. Johns Downtown Building

, St. John's, NL

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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