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1954 Robert 2023

Robert Brett Nelson

February 20, 1954 — October 11, 2023

Robert Brett Nelson, known affectionately as Brett, passed away unexpectedly on October 11, 2023, in Big Bear, CA, at the age of 69. Born on February 20, 1954, in Greensboro, North Carolina, Brett was a beloved husband, father, brother, uncle, cousin, friend, and colleague.


Brett was a man of many admirable qualities. He was known for his intelligence, kindness, sociability, and sense of humor. Brett had a deep sense of pride in everything he did, whether it was his professional accomplishments or his personal relationships.


After completing his higher education, including a Bachelor's degree from Appalachian State University and a Master's degree from the University of Georgia, Brett dedicated his career to the field of school psychology. He served as a School Psychologist in Greeley Public Schools, Colorado, and later received a Ph.D. from the University of Colorado at Boulder and became an Adjunct Professor of School Psychology at the University of Northern Colorado. Brett's passion for education and psychology led him to become a Professor of School Psychology at California State University, San Bernardino. He was an active member of numerous professional associations across the country and internationally. He was recognized for his contributions to the field with the 2022 APA-Division 16 School Psychology Contributions to Practice Award.


Beyond his professional pursuits, Brett had a zest for life and a love for the outdoors. He found solace and joy in the mountains and the ocean. An avid skier, he embraced the beauty of nature through activities such as hiking, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, boating, fishing, mountain biking, bodysurfing and camping. Brett also cherished his long walks along the beach, where he would engage in prayer and enjoy the serenity of the waves. He also enjoyed his daily walks around the neighborhood with his husky dogs, Kenai and Luna. He had a passion for travel and explored countless destinations across the country, national parks, and countries worldwide. In recent years, while continuing teaching and research at the university, Brett dedicated time to volunteering at Mary's Mercy Center in San Bernardino, where he made a meaningful impact on the lives of many men on their journey to recovery.


Brett will be deeply missed by his surviving loved ones: his wife, Diana, and their children, Arianna and Robert Aiden; and his daughter, Brittany, from a prior marriage. He also leaves behind his nephews, Garrett and Grant, nieces Brooklyn and Maddison, brothers-in-law Tim and David, sisters-in-law Lisa and Jill, father-in-law Tom and cousin Sally.


Brett was preceded in death by his mother, Nancy, father, Robert, siblings Carla and Lindsey, and nephew Samuel. His absence will be profoundly felt by his extended family and friends.


A memorial service to honor Brett's life will be held on November 3, 2023, at 1:00pm at the Emmerson-Bartlett Memorial Chapel in Redlands, California.


In memory of Brett, his family kindly requests that donations be made to Mary's Mercy Center, where he dedicated his time and passion.


Brett's legacy will live on through the memories and impact he made on those fortunate enough to have known him. He will be remembered for his unwavering dedication to his profession, his love for the outdoors, and his compassionate spirit. May his soul find eternal peace.


To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Robert Brett Nelson , please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Celebration of Life

Friday, November 3, 2023

Starts at 1:00 pm (Pacific time)

Emmerson-Bartlett Memorial Chapel - Redlands

703 Brookside Avenue, Redlands, CA 92373

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