Judith Elaine Nelson

March 11, 1948June 18, 2016
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Judith Elaine Nelson (Judy Clark), 68, former resident of Amarillo, died in Austin on June 18, 2016 after a massive stroke. A graduate of Amarillo High School, Judy will be remembered as a musician who could move you to joy or tears: harmonizing with sister Dorothy; alone on the stage with her bari uke Benjamin (easier to move than that old upright piano); filling the stage with The Last Chance Band; writing songs so personal and emotional; jamming with musicians of every genre in Amarillo and Austin and beyond. Her first foray into the music scene was in Canyon, TX at a coffee house called Stanyon Street, around 1965. Thus began a lifetime of performing, recording and great camaraderie with other musicians. Her voice was full of blues and jazz and hillbilly honky-tonk. She had a massive repertoire and would surprise us with the most obscure songs. There was so much fun, watching the Simpsons and Futurama (her favorite), playing Trivial Pursuit with friends around the kitchen table for HOURS. Mickey Mouse stickers and coffee filters, New Years' bashes to start the year off right, and music, music, music. Singer and songwriter, she simply loved music. She also loved her family and her friends. The unofficial historian and memory bank of all things past, she would often reminisce, recalling those "halcyon days of yore." Those who will miss her humor and her conversation include Elmo Smith, husband; Andrew Smith, son; Dorothy Browning and Jeanette Moeller, sisters; Richard Nelson, brother; and numerous relatives and friends. We'd like to list them all, but she was the one who remembered all the people and all the stories.

Services will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, June 23, 2016 at Cook Walden Funeral Home, 6100 N Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX 78752 with burial to follow at Austin Memorial Park, 2800 Hancock Dr, Austin, TX 78735. In lieu of flowers, please raise a glass in honor of a life well lived.


  • Funeral Service Thursday, June 23, 2016
  • Graveside Service Thursday, June 23, 2016

Judith Elaine Nelson

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Debby Tillman

June 24, 2016

I've known Judy what seems like forever. I remember spending the night at a slumber party at her house one time. She was always so witty and just plain nice. I loved her voice. I was looking forward to seeing her at our 50th class reunion. I love that picture, it looks just like I will always remember her.

I am so sorry for her family and friends. She was definitely one of a kind and will be missed by many.

Gladys Maiwald

June 22, 2016

We are so sorry for your loss. She was loved by many & will be missed. Gladys & Lothar Maiwald

John Chandler

June 22, 2016

So sorry to hear this, have known Judy forever. Just Dropped by to see the Show, was one of my favorite songs to play with Alvin. She will be missed..

Bennie Garcia

June 22, 2016

Judy was a great friend & will be missed by all. We shared many great memories from home run tennis, all night pool, volleyball, to many nights of great music and laughter. Her love of trivia, seeing ducks, singing with family, talking British, & always her love of music will always be remembered. We will miss her greatly. Can't be there in person, but will be there in spirit and love.

Vicki Fowler

June 22, 2016

Met Judy in Amarillo, thru the Garcia's, in '77. Music and fun flowed.Though family,friends and fan will miss you,it was a true joy to have known you.
Vicki Fowler (Bastrop, Tx)

Carole Boyer

June 21, 2016

Remember her singing & love of music! RIP, Judith!

Ron and Colleen Russell

June 21, 2016

Admired, respected and remembered. I first heard her sing in Amarillo, TX 1975. Judy Nelson wrote one of my favorite song. Although I did not know her well, she enriched my life thru her talent and for that I'm grateful. Condolences to her family and those she loved.

Lynn Lee

June 21, 2016

I am so blessed to have known Judy in high school in Amarillo. Her talent, love of life and tremendous humor will be greatly missed! She is singing in the heavens!!

Danna Garcia

June 21, 2016

What great times we had, Judy and Linda and I, all through high school together, and then for years after, she was a BEST best friend. Someone called the 3 of us the 3 musketeers, and I guess we were. I was with her (Bennie too) at all the music gigs, Stanyon Street, The Pendulum, Stumpy's, and a zillion more, just part of the "support team". I remember the apartment behind a house just east of Washington St. where she & Dorothy and Jeanette all sang harmonies together for hours. Listening to Mick Jagger & the Stones. Moving a big oak upright piano up some rickety exterior stairs to another apartment, I think on 16th (recently torn down). Long walks around town & long talks about everything imaginable (it's just 3 more blocks!) Loved her songs, her singing, her humor and sense of fun. Penguins and ducks, and her wonderful artwork. Her Alice in Wonderland painting still hangs on my dining room wall. She's the one who always kept up with everyone & remembered everyone You can bet on lots of glasses being raised in her honor tonight! Love ya Judy - till we all meet again!

Jerry Young

June 21, 2016

How lucky I was and how grateful I am that our paths crossed so long ago in Amarillo. Oh, to hear her sing "Daddy Won't You Sing Old Shep Again."