Elford John Nelson 
Location served:
Years in Practice:
1920 to 1953
Area of Specialization:
Family Medicine  


Dr. Elford John Nelson was born in Guelph, Ontario on the 12th of April, 1897.  Dr. Nelson was the youngest of 2 children born to Richard Edward Nelson and the former Mary Margaret Nicklin.  His father was a tailor and his sister’s name was Rita Irene Nelson.  Dr. Nelson grew up at 74 Baker Street in Guelph.

Dr. Nelson entered The University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine in 1915.  His studies were interrupted by WWI when he enlisted in Toronto on the 13th of October, 1917.  At the time he resided at 466 Markham Street in Toronto.  On his Medical History Sheet, it was recorded that he was 5’6″ tall, and he had brown hair and brown eyes.  He was discharged with the rank of Private on the 16th of November, 1918.

Dr. Nelson graduated from The University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine in 1920.  It is possible that his father did not see him graduate, as he died on the 4th of May, 1920.  After interning Dr. Nelson set up his medical practice in Acton, Ontario.

Dr. Nelson married Nellie Irene Sunley on the 19th of April, 1921 in Guelph.  Mrs. Nelson was born in Guelph on the 30th of March, 1897.  She was the 5th of 7 children born to Thomas James Sunley and the former Jessie McLeod.  Her father was a barber and her siblings were; Annie May Sunley, Myrta Jane Sunley, Edna Ivine Sunley, Norman Wesley Sunley, Mary Christina Sunley and Grace Murdena Sunley.  In 1911 the Sunley family resided at 341 Woolwich Street.

After Dr. and Mrs. Nelson were married they resided on Frederick Street in Acton.  They had 4 children.  Barbara Jean Nelson was born in Acton on the 24th of June, 1930, Elizabeth Ann Nelson was born on the 23rd of September, 1939.  (Elizabeth Ann Nelson died of a heart condition on the 29th of January, 1941 and she was buried at Woodlawn Cemetery in Guelph), Marjorie Nelson and Robert Nelson.

Dr. Nelson was a member of Council for the City of Acton for several years.  He enjoyed hockey and playing the organ.

Dr. Nelson moved to Guelph in 1941 and he practiced medicine in Collingwood before moving to Chatham.

In the spring of 1946, Dr. Nelson was living in Chatham.  He resided at 148A Wellington Street West and his medical practice was located at 247 King Street West.

Dr. Nelson immigrated to Pomona, California with Wilma “Patricia” Sherman on the 15th of August, 1947.   She was born in Hamilton, Ontario on the 3rd of September, 1922.  She was the youngest of 8 children born to Robert Sherman and the former Ottilie Glendinning.  Her father was an electrician at the Detroit Edison Power Company and her siblings were; Glen Robert Sherman, Muriel Genevieve Sherman, Blake Jefferson Sherman, Dorothy Jean Sherman, Eleanor Marguerite Sherman, Winona Ruth Sherman and Jack Sherman.  Mrs. Nelson was raised in Windsor and became a nurse.

Dr. Nelson and Wilma Patricia Sherman were married in Reno, Nevada on the 14th of February, 1948.  They resided at 1809 Westwood Place and his medical practice was located at 1621 N. Garey Ave., in Pomona.  Dr. and Mrs. Nelson had a daughter born to them in Pomona,  Vanessa Gayle Nelson in 1952.  A second daughter Winona Christine Nelson was born on the 28th of November 1953, just 5 months after the death of her father.

Dr. Nelson belonged to the Canadian Red Cross Society and the Pomona Optimist Club.  Not long before his death, Dr. Nelson moved his medical office to 1177 N. Park Avenue.

Dr. Nelson died at the Pomona Valley Community Hospital in Pomona, California on the 10th of June, 1953.

*Dr. Nelson’s first wife, Nellie Irene (Sunley) Nelson died on the 10th of September, 1976.  She was buried next to their daughter Elizabeth Anne Nelson at Woodlawn Memorial Park Cemetery in Guelph.  His daughter Barbara Jean (Nelson) Odeh graduated as a nurse.  She died in Victoria B.C. on the 20th of January, 1984.