Gerald Lee Nichols, 83, departed this planet on Friday, November 13th, from his favorite place, his cabin on Lake George. Gerry was born in Sparta, Wisconsin to Edward and Maurine (Reed) Nichols. After high school he enlisted in the U.S. Navy where he served in the Korean War. He followed his military service by graduating from UW-LaCrosse. Although he pursued coursework for his master’s in social work and urban planning, he spent his career serving the state of Wisconsin through the Department of Corrections. He further served his community as a trustee for the Village of Ashwaubenon for twelve years and for the board of Northeast Wisconsin Technical College (NWTC) for eleven years.
Gerry was proud of the family he created with Carol, his wife of 53 years. They raised their daughters in Ashwaubenon, where they have lived for over 40 years, with much of their summers spent up north on Lake George. There, he taught them how to trap crayfish, spot a Hodag, and shoot a pellet gun. Gerry was most content when in nature - be it hunting with his oldest friends, fishing, or trap shooting. He also enjoyed just sitting and listening to the world around him. He was always ready to share a story, or five, over a drink (in his younger years, beer, and later years coffee), and he never could find his damn jack-knife.
He is survived by his wife, Carol; his daughters, Erin (Kevin) Nichols Matkaiti and Meegan (Michael) Kaster; his grandchildren, Sullivan and Finnegan Kaster and Evelyn and Pierce Matkaiti; his brother, Thomas Nichols; his sister-in-law Bonnie (Harold) Peterson; his brothers-in-law Herman Ripp, Bill Harrie, and David (Jana) Ripp; along with several cousins, nieces, and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, Edward and Maurine Nichols; his half brother, Sam Nichols; his mother and father-in-law, Ella and Herman Ripp; niece, Jennifer Ripp; and sisters-in-law, Beverly Nichols, Carol Lee Ripp, and Rita Harrie.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you spread some kindness in this world - hold a door for someone slower than you, look someone in the eye and say hello, or buy one of those old guys at the counter a cup of coffee.
Expressions of sympathy, memories and photos may be shared with the family on his tribute page at www.lyndahl.com
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