OBITUARY

Harold "Neil" Nielsen Nichols

15 June, 19373 April, 2021

We are saddened to announce the peaceful passing of Neil Nichols on Saturday, April 3, 2021, with loved ones by his side. Born in Digby on June 15, 1937, he was the son of the late Harold Nichols and Lillian (Nielsen). Neil was predeceased by his wife Doris, son Dale and daughter Lori, as well as his brothers Peter and Frank. He is survived by son, Michael (Kim), daughters Sherri Davis (Gary) and Susan Connery (Richard). Neil also leaves behind 9 grandchildren and numerous great grandchildren, cousins, nieces and nephews.

His family was everything to him. He was lovingly referred to as “Bubby” or “Bubs” by his grandchildren. We are sure his great-grandchildren would have carried on that tradition. He is going to be incredibly missed.

Neil attended Digby Academy and graduated from Digby Regional High School. He was honoured to have been a commencement speaker at DRHS later in life. He moved to Toronto in 1956 to follow Doris, who moved there with her family from Centerville. He travelled there with a childhood friend, Wayne Wentzell. Wayne and his wife, Jane Flood, were with Neil and Doris through thick and thin. They all loved entertaining, parties and dancing. Neil began a long career at TransCanada Pipe Lines starting as a clerk in the accounting department. While at TransCanada, he attended night school to become a Certified Management Accountant and a member of the Financial Executives Institute, all while raising five children with Doris. The hard work paid off as he eventually rose to the roles of Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice-President. He later joined Key Span Energy Corporation in Brooklyn, NY, as a Senior Vice-President and President of Key Span Energy Development Corporation. He was also a Board Member of Keyera through 2016. Neil and his family continued to visit and stay in Nova Scotia for many weeks a year until he moved back permanently, as did his children.

He was heavily involved in many community organizations through the years, including the Salvation Army, the Order of Saint Lazarus, Digby and Area Health Services Foundation, the Annapolis Basin Conference Center (ABCC), and the Jordantown Acaciaville Conway Betterment Association (JACBA) Center of Excellence.

Neil loved to play golf and watch the major golf tournaments, whether it was in person or on television. He really enjoyed his fishing trips, but mostly his regular visits to the Hunt Camp in northern Ontario and the friendship and camaraderie he found there. He felt fortunate to be afforded so many opportunities to travel the world and enjoyed every minute. But, Neil loved Nova Scotia the most. He was a big history buff and, in particular, enjoyed local history and the stories that could be told through cemeteries. His personal keepsakes were very important to him as he considered them a connection to his past. He passed on many stories to family and friends. Neil gathered annually with some of his life-long friends in Maui. Eventually that became a family tradition for many of their children. Geoff and Mary Mitchell and Brian and Ruth Aune were part of the core group that expanded through the years. He loved watching everybody’s children grow up. Around Digby, he never missed an opportunity to share a cigar (or two) with his good friend Dominique Hanna and loved Monday night “scotch club”. He enjoyed his Tuesday morning coffee group and looked forwarded to Saturday lunches with the “boys”. He particularly enjoyed time spent with his life-long friend Harry Winchester. He wanted his friends to know that he cherished each and every one of you and felt blessed to have so many of you in his life.

Neil and his family were deeply appreciative of the efforts of his wonderful palliative care team. Their support, together with the thoughtful and dedicated care provided by the nurses with the VON, were invaluable. We cannot thank them enough.

Arrangements have been entrusted to Jayne’s Funeral Home in Digby, NS. Plans for a Celebration of Life, post - Covid are in the works. Donations in Neil’s honour can be made specifically to the Gord Downie Fund for Brain Cancer Research through the Sunnybrook Foundation. To donate online, go to https://donate.sunnybrook.ca/tribute and designate the Gord Downie Fund for Brain Cancer Research in the drop down menu.

Services

No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.

Memories

Harold "Neil" Nielsen Nichols

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Penny Outhouse

10 April 2021

My deepest sympathy to my nieces and nephew and their family. He will be greatly missed. Your dad was always there for Junie and myself

Carole Nichols

9 April 2021

A beautiful sweet, kind man with a wonderful sense of humor. He had a great love of life.
I will miss you lots.
RIP sweet man.

Greg Demers

9 April 2021

My condolences to Mike, Sherry, Sue and family.
R.I.P. Uncle Neil.

Nancy Turnbull

9 April 2021

Greta and I send our love. We will always remember our times at the lake, many moons ago. We were blessed to have him as part of our family. Gone from the earthly world but never forgotten.

Simone Dugas

8 April 2021

Neil was part of our family for the past 8 years. He always lived life to the fullest; he travelled around the world experiencing many new adventures and making new friendships. He gave many hours as volunteer on numerous committees. He especially loved smoking his cigars at the cabin, going to the hunting camp and on fishing trips. He always had a warm smile and a big hug with stories to share. Deepest sympathies to his family and many friends. May Neil now rest in peace in God's loving arms.

Errol Goudey

8 April 2021

Neil was a true gentleman and am happy to have called him a friend. I never tired of listening to his storeys and experiences.
He will be missed by so many.

Joanne Mattinson

8 April 2021

I had the extreme pleasure of working with Neil on the Board of Directors for the Annapolis Basin Conference Center for several years. Not to mention his smiles and hugs when meeting him around the area. He was very community minded Condolences to all the families from our home. Xo

Lois Stevenson

8 April 2021

My condolences to Susan, Sherri, Mike and their families on the loss of the family patriarch, Neil Nichols. He was a force, although always with humility. I only knew Neil for 6 years, after moving to the “Cove”, and got to meet him as a neighbor and as a colleague on the Board of the Atalanta Hospice Society and executive of the Acadia Commandery of the Order of St. Lazarus. We had so much fun planning and delivering the “NS Kitchen Party” event for delegates at the national meeting of the Order of St. Lazarus held in Digby in May 2019. He was not only generous in letting us use his “old yacht club” building for the Kitchen Party, but amazed me with a whole bunch of organizational skills and contacts he brought to bear to make that event such a success - all quietly and without fanfare - seeking no personal credit for any of it, which he fully deserved. That is just one example - When Neil was working on something, you could be confident it was going to happen. I wish I could have heard more of his stories that now will only live on in his family and closest friends and colleagues - locally, nationally and internationally. Let his legacy live on in our hearts and minds and be forever memorialized!




Kim (Kenley) & Chris Thibaudeau

8 April 2021

We are so very sorry to hear of Neil’s passing.
He will be missed by so many! Our thoughts & prayers are with Mike, Sherri, Susan & families.
RIP Neil.

Joe Coombs

7 April 2021

What a pleasure to call you my friend and Brother In-Law. Rest In Peace my friend.

From the Family