Ronald Nelson, former Berkeley police chief. Photo: Alameda Health Systems
Ronald Nelson, former Berkeley police chief. Photo: Alameda Health Systems

Ronald D. Nelson, who served as chief of the Berkeley Police Department from 1982 to 1990, died Monday while on a walk with friends in Tilden Park. He was 82.

Nelson had a long and distinguished career in public safety. He began his career in 1956 with the Los Angeles Police Department, where he served 21 years and rose to the rank of Lieutenant.  He retired from the LAPD in 1977 to serve a police commander with the Compton Police Department for two years. He left briefly to be Chief of Police of the China Lake Naval Weapons Center in Riverside, California, and then returned to Compton in 1980, where he was appointed assistant city manager. He became city manager in 1981.

Read Nelson’s full obituary on Berkeleyside’s obituaries page, and share your messages of condolence and/or memories of Ron Nelson in the comments there.

Berkeleyside is always honored to publish, at no cost, obituaries of members of the Berkeley community. Please email text and photo(s) to editors@berkeleyside.com.

Berkeleyside staff

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