Howard Gardner “Nick” Nicholson, age 92 of Lancaster, passed away Thursday, September 17, 2020 at Lanfair Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing Care.
Nick, beloved father, grandfather, and great-grandfather was born in Providence, Rhode Island on March 8, 1928, to Stephen and Janet (Dexter) Nicholson. Raised on a small, rocky farm, Nick had a love for animals and farming that led him first to graduate from Rhode Island State College (now University of Rhode Island) with a degree in Agriculture, then to a job with Purina Mills, where he worked as a District Sales Manager in New England and Ohio for almost 40 years.
It was during a visit to a Purina store in St. Johnsbury, Vermont, that Nick met the love of his life, Dorothy Jenne.
Nick was a member of Sigma Chi and served with the 40th Infantry Division during the Korean Conflict.
Although officially retiring from Purina in 1990, Nick never stopped working. He became a member of the Rushville Lions where he served as Treasurer and President and for 19 years coordinated the Lions Red Cross blood drives. Nick was awarded the Melvin Jones Fellowship Award, the highest honor bestowed by the Lions, and several awards from the Red Cross. Nick and Dorothy were dedicated members of the First United Methodist Church, where they spent countless hours volunteering.
Nick also enjoyed watching his children and grandchildren’s sporting, drama, and musical activities.
Nick is preceded in death by his parents, wife Dorothy, half-brothers William and Stephen Nicholson, and his half-sister Mary Nicholson. Nick is survived by his older sister Dot Wilcox, sister-in-law Carole Hamlett, his five children: Rena Stoughton, Eric Nicholson (Barbara), Nancy Thompson (Allyn), Greg Nicholson (Christina), and Jim Nicholson (Melanie), 12 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren.
Always a bit of a character, Nick asked to end his obituary with this:
“I’ve seen a lot, from the end of the horse and buggy era to the age of jet planes and computers. It’s been a good life. Goodbye to you all. I’m going to see Dorothy now. I’ll see you all later.”
A Celebration of Life Service will be held Thursday, September 24, 2020 at 12 PM at The First United Methodist Church with Rev. Dr. Brian Jones officiating. Caring Cremation® has taken place by the FRANK E. SMITH FUNERAL HOME AND CREMATORY, LANCASTER, OHIO 43130.
Friends may visit 2 hours prior to the service at the church on Thursday. There will be a Lions Memorial service at 11:40 AM at the church. Inurnment will follow at Floral Hills Memory Gardens with the Lancaster Veterans Burial Detail conducting military rites at the cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the Rushville Lions Club, c/o Nicole Osborne, 1249 E. Chestnut St., Lancaster, Ohio 43130, The First United Methodist Church, 163 E Wheeling St, Lancaster, OH 43130 or the Red Cross, 115 W. Wheeling St, Lancaster, OH 43130.
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