In Memory of


September 15, 1957 - December 3, 1993

Kenneth L. Claggett was arrested for Nelson's murder Friday morning, May 4, 2007

He pled guilty to Voluntary Manslaughter on November 27, 2007.

He was released immediately following the hearing after having served a 223 day sentence.

Link to Washington Post Article

Washington Post Comments

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Who He Was

Justice Overdue

A Mother's Grief

Bill's Letter

Trish's Letters

Floyd's Poem

Cindy's Poem

Cindy's Letter


Fast Cars, Bikes

Photos as a Child

Photos as an Adult

Photos w/Chance

More w/Chance

More Photos

Nelson's Harley



Img010.jpg (30653 bytes)Nelson was an honest and open kind of guy with a heart of pure gold. Always ready to help anyone who was down and out, his generosity was unsurpassed. Nelson freely placed his trust in others. The youngest of three children, Nelson had a quick sense of humor and a dry wit that kept his friends doubled over with laughter.

Nelson learned the roofing trade at the age of 17. He often bragged that he could nail cedar shakes faster than anyone, and his fellow workers agreed. He was fast at mathematics and had little patience for those of us who occasionally had to use a calculator.

Nelson was a talented businessman at a young age. He opened and operated several successful roofing companies. The first one, opened when he was 18, was named "The Roof Doctor."

A lover of gadgets, Nelson was always on the cutting edge, incorporating state-of-the-art electronic equipment for both personal and business use.

Nelson had an enviable zest for living. He loved people and loved to party; as evidenced by his eclectic collection of loyal friends. He was an avid and skilled slalom water skier and liked to ride his new Harley Davidson motorcycle which he proudly shared with his friends. Fascinated with aviation, Nelson was planning to take flying lessons.


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Nelson often said the happiest day of his life was when his son Chance was born. Unfortunately, his marriage was far from ideal.  He was a victim of spousal abuse.  Nelson desperately wanted custody of his son when he reluctantly left the marriage and was preparing to pursue custody of his son at the time he was killed.

Nelson was a person who was blossoming in the face of unbelievable adversity. He was discovering his own spirituality and was striving to make his life more profound. He was always upbeat, even while facing problems that would have destroyed a lesser person.

On the evening of December 2, 1993, 36-year-old Nelson John Minter was at home alone and had talked on the phone with a friend just before 11:00 pm. The following day, December 3, 1993, his house was discovered smoldering about 1:00 pm. Fire had destroyed the interior of his home and his body was discovered in the basement beneath his bedroom, where the floor had collapsed.

An autopsy revealed that Nelson died from blunt force trauma resulting from at least seven blows to the head. Although most of the physical evidence was destroyed in the fire, Kenneth L. Claggett pled guilty to the murder on November 27th, 2007.

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