Memorial website in the memory of your loved one
This memorial website was created in the memory of our loved one, Nelson "Hammer" Beideman who was born in New Jersey on April 17, 1953 and passed away too soon on May 25, 2006 at the age of 53.  We will remember him forever, and this website will also remember him forever.

Our family is extremely grateful for the outpourings of love and support we have received from friends, colleagues, and family.

I encourage you to leave a tribute or condolence, or light a 'virtual' candle by clicking the tabs above.

Gradually, as time permits, this site will continue to be updated, and will include photos, thoughts, and other content.

We thank you for your continued kind thoughts,

Ben, Terri, and Justin
Click here to see Nelson Beideman's
Family Tree
Tributes and Condolences
Birthday Thoughts   / Ben Beideman (son)

I just wanted to let you know that I’ve been thinking about you a lot, especially today. You would have been 55 years old today.

As fate would have it, Cousin Jimmy is now in Heaven with you, far too soon. That has ...  Continue >>
Love you Nelson   / Lael Rutherford (Sister)
Terri, Ben and Justin Please forgive me for not posting a tribute until now. I have from time to time come to this website and read the words of others, but somehow could never get myself to post anything. It still is amazing to me how many people a...  Continue >>
Regrets and Condolences   / Herbert Wittnebert (MMA Class of 75 )
Captain Hammer, Captain Hammer, Captain Hammer, KFGY The Tanker Star Mississippi Calling the Fishing Vessel Terri Lei, Captain Hammer… I never did get a response, but over the years I made the call off the New Jersey coast more than a couple o...  Continue >>
Missing you Nelson   / Gail Johnson (Friend, Colleague )
Okay, I have not yet sent in my tribute. Despite the fact that Nelson was one of the most important men in my life, I've not yet allowed his absence to affect me. Well, "allowance" is perhaps not the relevant factor. Somehow the realization that ...  Continue >>
Dad...  / Ben Beideman (Son)
On Christmas Day it will be seven months since you left this earth.  Its still so hard to think that you're gone... I miss you so very much, we all do.  Mom, Justin, and I, and Molly too, have gotten alot closer in the months that have pass...  Continue >>
More tributes and condolences...
Click here to pay tribute or offer your condolences
His legacy
June 7, 2007 -- NOAA Fisheries Sustainable Fisheries Leadership Award  

Vice Admiral Conrad C. Lautenbacher (Ret.), Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere, and Dr. William T. Hogarth Assitant Administrator for Fisheries, presented the second annual Sustainable Fisheries Leadership Awards to many worthy award recipients on June 7, 2007, in Washington, D.C.  Among those awarded was a special award recognizing Nelson.  The following is quoted from the Award website:

Posthumous Recognition

Nelson "Hammer" Beideman, April 1953 – May 2006

Nominated for several categories by a broad spectrum of constituents, Nelson is honored posthumously this evening for his lifetime contributions and tireless efforts to raise awareness for management and enforcement of international fisheries, and for preserving the economic viability of the Atlantic pelagic longline fleet through sustainable fishing practices. A sword boat captain, and co-founder and Executive Director of Blue Water Fishermen's Association, Nelson helped initiate some of the most effective collaborative research projects between commercial fishermen, NOAA scientists and conservation organizations. He was an active fisheries management partner who was instrumental in efforts to reduce domestic and international bycatch of sea turtles, and develop domestic and international management programs that led to the rebuilding of north Atlantic swordfish. The legacy of his contributions to focus attention on international fisheries will be seen in the years ahead. Nelson's energy, high spirit, and enthusiasm will be sorely missed.


The family was honored to accept this award on Nelson's behalf, and we know it would have made him proud.  The NMFS/NOAA Fisheries website has a video presentation (RealPlayer is required, and Nelson is the last person featured on the video), and a photo collection from the evening.  This NOAA Fisheries Award site can be accessed at  

July, 2006 - Commercial Fisheries News  

The July, 2006 issue of Commercial Fisheries News included a touching tribute to Nelson, with an editorial as well as tributes written by Rich Ruais of East Coast Tuna Association, Nils Stolpe of the Garden State Seafood Association, Ernie Panacek, the President of Blue Water Fishermen's Association, and Larry Sylvia, an early Treasurer of BWFA who worked closely with Nelson especially in BWFA's early years and a family friend.

These kind tributes have touched all of us and I thank Janice Plante and Commerical Fisheries News for making them available for me to share with you on this site.


Adobe Acrobat Reader is required to view this .PDF file.

View: July, 2006 Commerical Fisheries News Tribute

May 27, 2006 - APP: Shore fishermen mourn advocate  
Our family is extremely grateful to Kirk Moore for his quick action and kind tribute article that touched us and many other people.  It appeared in the May 27, 2006 edition of the Asbury Park Press.

View: APP - Shore fishermen mourn advocate
NELSON R. “HAMMER” BEIDEMAN, 53, of BARNEGAT LIGHT died suddenly on May 25 at home, surrounded by his loving family. Born in Camden, he grew up in Pennsauken, spending summers in Barnegat Light, before he relocated there permanently in 1975. A charter boat fisherman since the age of seven, fishing was his life’s passion. After high school, he graduated Maine Maritime Academy and was selected for commission in the US Navy Reserve where he served honorably. During his commission he worked as a commercial fishing captain. In 1981, he became the owner and operator of his own commercial vessel, the F/V Terri Lei, continuing until 1993, when the boat was tragically lost at sea. In 1989, Nelson was one of the founders of Blue Water Fishermen’s Association, a non-profit organization representing commercial swordfish and tuna fishermen. He served four years as its first President, and became its Executive Director in 1993, a position he held for the rest of his life.

He participated on the official United States delegation to the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas, a UN fishery management body, since 1994. In addition, he relentlessly represented the views of working commercial fishermen in many other state, regional, national, and international organizations. Over the years, his efforts have been honored by several industry and governmental bodies, among them: the Highliner Award in October, 1994 by National Fishermen, the Community Partnership Award in June, 1998 by the Jersey Shore Alliance, the NOAA Team Member of the Month Award in December, 2003 by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and a Certificate of Appreciation in April, 2006 from the US Department of Commerce. He was a pioneer in the promotion of using circle-type fishing hooks to reduce the incidence of unintended injuries to sea turtles, which is now federal law and set to become an international standard. In his spare time, he enjoyed going fishing and crabbing, working in his garden, and spending time with his family, friends, and pets.

Nelson was predeceased by his parents, Benjamin and Rosalinda Beideman. Surviving are his wife of more than thirty years, Terri Lei, his sons Benjamin and Justin and Justin’s girlfriend Molly Molinaro, all of Barnegat Light; a sister, Lael Rutherford, her husband Jim Sr. and their children Jim Jr. and Devon, all of Medford; a brother-in-law, Eric Hooper and his partner Donna Curtis of Ellsworth, Maine; and many other relatives and extended family, especially two close cousins, Laura Lanzilotta, her husband Michael and daughter Mia of Delran; and Bonnie Stout, her partner John Masson, and her daughters Laura and Kimberley, all of Haddon Township. He is also greatly missed by his many friends as well as the many colleagues with whom he worked.

A memorial service celebrating Nelson’s life will be held on Wednesday, June 7th at 1:00pm at the family’s home located at 910 Bayview Avenue in Barnegat Light, with a reception immediately following. Cards would be appreciated; however, in lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to to a charity of your choice.  Cards can be mailed to Beideman Family, 910 Bayview Avenue, PO Box 579, Barnegat Light, NJ 08006.
Google search results  

Here is a listing from Google of all the mentions he has had in news and government publications over the years: Google Search.

Nelson's Photo Album
November 2003
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