Anderson remembered as dedicated public servant

Sep 10, 2019

Mayor Dr. Nels Anderson

The mayor of the city of Soldotna passed away this (Tuesday) morning after a lengthy illness. Dr. Nels Anderson’s death was announced on Facebook by his sons, Nate and Matt.
    Anderson is being remembered as much for his leading the city as he is for being an obstetrician who delivered a large portion of the community’s citizens over the years.
    Soldotna Vice-Mayor Paul Whitney said he was still in shock when reached this morning.
    “He's done a lot for this community and probably half the kids that are in this community, he was involved in their birth. Just quite a shock to everyone and we just, I just don't know what to say anymore.”
    Anderson missed several city council meetings this summer, which Whitney chaired.
    “Pretty tough last couple of months for him. He was a good man, a good mayor, an outstanding doctor, and a great citizen of our community. He'll be sorely missed by a lot of people and my heart goes out to him and his family.”
    Soldotna Councilwoman Lisa Parker remembered Anderson, whom she’s known most of her life.
    “You know, he served on school board with my sister, we worked together on city council and then also through Boy Scouts (and) Cub Scouts. My son was involved in Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts and, you know, we've known Nels forever and what a great guy. You know, and there were times I didn't always agree with him on an issue, but there was always decency and respect.”
    Councilman Tyson Cox said all of Anderson’s accomplishments will become known in time.
    “He was a big part of our community. He was involved with kids quite a bit with the Scouts, big Scout supporter. And he's just been involved in the community in all kinds of ways. I'm sure there will be a time when we get to hear how many things he was actually involved in, and that will be a great time.”
    Doctor John Nels Anderson was first elected to Soldotna City Council 10 years ago, serving one term before running for mayor in 2013. After a two-year hiatus, he was elected again in 2017. His term ends next year, and depending on the timing, Soldotna may have to hold a special election to fill the seat until Oct. 2020, when it will be up for election in its normal cycle.