Fritz Roland Nilsson, 89, died at 10:20 a.m. on Friday, February 21, 2014 at Rosewood Care Center in Alton. He was born November 26, 1924 in Svano, Sweden the son of the late Johan Nilsson and Sofia Vilhelmina Vallin. Four brothers and six sisters preceded him in death. He served in the Swedish Air Force during WWII. He retired from Boeing in 1983. Roland had two loves in his lifetime: Barbara Lee Henderson who he married August 29, 1953 in Alton and she preceded him in death on December 8, 1980; and his loving companion for the last 30 years, Molly Hall of Godfrey.
While attending the University of Michigan he won six Big Ten Conference championships in the shot put and five event championships at the Penn Relays. He represented Sweden in the Summer Olympics of 1948 and 1952.
Surviving are two sons; Craig Nilsson (Ann) of Jerseyville and Eric Nilsson (Connie) of Jerseyville, three grandchildren; Justin Nilsson, Ned Nilsson and Hallie Nilsson. Besides his wife he was preceded in death by a son; Ned Nilsson.
A memorial open house will be scheduled at a later date.
In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to The Ned Nilsson Scholarship fund at Alton High School.
Additional information and online guest book may be found at www.gentfuneralhome.com