Nelson F. Ashline

November 23, 1930June 24, 2013

Nelson Francis Ashline died on June 24 at his home in Springfield. He was 82 years old. He was born in Berlin, NH and moved to Concord MA as a teenager. He joined the Navy at age 18, serving on the Robert H. McCard in the Atlantic and Mediterranean Theaters shorty after WWII. The stories of his life as a young seaman in very turbulent times could entertain any audience. With the help of the GI bill, he completed a BA from Boston University and then went on to earn a Master’s Degree and Doctorate Degree at Harvard University. His distinguished career in education spanned over 50 years as teacher, principal, administrator and policy developer at the local, state and federal levels. He retired from the Illinois State Board of Education in 1990 where he served as Executive Deputy Superintendent. He went on to work at the US Department of Education and Southern Illinois University before ending his career. He was a mentor to many, loved a good pun which he always embellished, and was a creative thinker. He brought wit, wisdom, and a reassuring presence to friends, family and colleagues. His enthusiasm for doing his best -whether in problem solving or in expertly mowing the lawn- made him the success that he was in all aspects of his life.

He will be missed by his devoted wife, Margaret (Peggy) Ashline, his loving children, Peter Ashline (wife Nancy) of Boone, NC, Suzanne Ashline (husband Michael Quarshie) of Southbridge, MA and Margaret Ashline of N. Kingstown, RI. He was a much loved grandfather to Heather, Kevin, Sarah and Allison. He also leaves behind two great grandchildren, brothers and sisters-in law, several nieces and nephews as well as his sisters, Patricia, Peggy and Maureen, and brothers John and Robert.

His family wishes to express their gratitude for the expert and comforting guidance of Diana Schafer, Director of Clinical Services for Interim Health Care, as well as the many caregivers from Interim who provided such warm and gentle care.

The family will host a Celebration of Life at Panther Creek Country Club on July 12 2013 from 4 to 7pm. Friends and colleagues are invited to join them.

Contributions may be made to The Springfield Schools Foundation, c/o Julie Hammers, 1900 W. Monroe St. Springfield, IL 62704 or to The Salvation Army, c/o Illinois National Bank, 322 E. Capitol Ave. Springfield, IL 62701.

Arrangements are under the direction of Bisch Funeral Home West, 2931 S. Koke Mill Rd., Springfield. Please read the online obituary at where tributes and condolences may be left for the family.


  • Celebration of Life Friday, July 12, 2013

Nelson F. Ashline

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Sheila Evans-Phee

October 24, 2013

Loved and missed by family & friends ever still . . . .

Tom Grayson

July 11, 2013

Indeed, Nelson was a mentor with high quality standards and expectations. He has bettered society in many ways.

Dr. Daniel Dixon

July 6, 2013

As the best mentor a young man could ever will be missed!
Peggy, I know that you will be strong.

jack fyans

July 1, 2013

He was a towering mentor with a fabulous wit and mind.... spent much time with him as we "trouble shot" many issues facing the State Board and he was always fond and extremely supportive of our research to resolve the challenges. He was a blessing to us all

Rosalie Campbell

June 30, 2013

Peggy, I was so sorry to learn that Nels passed away. Your were a loving wife and caregiver. You shall be in my prayers during this time asking for God to give you strength as you adjust.
Rosalie Max Campbell

Lynnette Jones-Maske

June 30, 2013

So very sorry to learn of your loss, Peggy. May the many great memories you shared give you comfort in the days ahead. Lynnette Jones-Maske

June 28, 2013

Along with my love for the wonderful daughter you are to your parents I also send my deepest condolences.

Steve & Linda Jo

g lang

June 28, 2013

my condolences to meg and family in this time of loss may you find comfort in the presence of each other at the loss of a dear loved one

Love always, Shawn Backs

June 27, 2013

Hi Peggy - You are in my heart and thoughts. The love you shared for each other sets the bar for many. I will see you soon.

June 27, 2013

Our condolences to the family of Nelson. It was a pleasure to have worked with him at the Illinois State Board of Education for many years. He was a true leader and a fair administrator.

Peace be with you all, Ted Randall (Springfield, IL)