Mrs. Joan Burk Nelson, 81, of LaGrange, died Wednesday, April 6, 2011 at Emory Midtown Hospital, Atlanta. She was born Sept. 7, 1929, in Talladega, Ala., the daughter of the late George W. Burk and Sallie Wheat Burk. She was a member of First Baptist Church on The Square. She was a member of the Eastern Star and the Womens Division of the Chamber of Commerce. Mrs. Nelson was retired from the Jefferson County School System as a teacher. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Joe Frank Nelson. Survivors include her three children, Marc A. Nelson, of Dothan, Ala., Frank (Kelley) Nelson, of Lagrange, and Hope Nelson (Robert) Pepe, of McDonough; eight grandchildren, Andy Nelson, Joe Nelson, Sara Ellen Nelson, Nate Nelson, Virginia Nelson, Victoria Pepe, Pete Nelson Broderick, and Frankie Pepe; three sisters, Sally White, Beverly White, and Mary Burk Smith; adopted family, Francois and Virginia Picard and their sons, Raphael and Thomas Picard, and numerous nieces and nephews. A celebration of her life will be held Sunday, April 10, at 2:30 p.m., in the Ida Cason Callaway Chapel of First Baptist Church on The Square, with Dr. Paul Baxter and the Rev. Paul Blair officiating. The family will be at the home of Mrs. Joan Nelson, and will receive friends at the church on Sunday from 1:30 p.m., to 2:30 p.m.. In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions be made to First Baptist Church on The Square, or Hospice LaGrange, in memory of Mrs. Joan Burk Nelson. Arrangements are by Striffler-Hamby Mortuary, 1010 Mooty Bridge Road, LaGrange, Ga. 30240, (706) 884-8636, www.shlagrange.com.