Gary Lee Nickell was born on August 29, 1942 in Milden, Saskatchewan to Susan and Harlan Nickell. He grew up in Wiseton where he was babied by six older siblings and helped around the farm. Growing up he attended school in Wiseton and lived to curl when not at school.
As a young man, he was convinced to move to Rosetown where he started working at Clements Funeral Home. He eventually apprenticed there under Tom Clements and Don Wickett. After Tom’s passing, Gary bought the funeral home in 1965. While at the funeral home, Gary apprenticed a number of funeral directors in their training. He retired and sold the funeral home in 1989.
Through his first marriage, Gary welcomed daughters Kandaas in 1965, Lana in 1966, Pam in 1967 and Lisa in 1969.
In 1976, Gary married his wife of 44 years, Gloria Hintze and they continued to make their home in Rosetown. They welcomed son Chris in 1983 and daughter Karin in 1986. Together they built and operated a new funeral home on Young Street in Rosetown as well as operated a jewellery store coined Nickells & Diamonds in the old funeral home building downtown.
Gary was actively involved in the hockey community in Rosetown for many years, both through the Redwing Hockey Club and coaching hockey. He travelled to Thunder Bay on two different occasions with PeeWee teams to compete. As the years passed, he became interested in antique cars and later in restoring them. He enjoyed travelling all over the province and beyond to participate in car shows.
Gary was the neighbour everyone wished they had; socializing with others and always stepping in to lend a hand. He was very supportive of his family and involved in many activities with them. He was a dog lover and had many furry companions over the years. In his later years he enjoyed trips south to Needles, California with Gloria during the cold winter months. He was an avid lake goer, enjoying cabins at Murray Lake, Loon Lake and for the past 28 years at Beaver Flat on the Lake Diefenbaker. He met many wonderful friends at these places and enjoyed everything the lake had to offer; the sun, watersports, fishing and family time.
Gary moved to Swift Current with his wife Gloria in the fall of 2020. On January 29, 2021, he passed away at the Cypress Regional Hospital with his family by his side.
Gary is survived by loving wife Gloria, siblings Donna Wickett and Doris Aseltine, daughters Lana (Tom) McNeilly and children Jenna and Matthew, Pam (Pat) Sawa and children Alyssa, Kyla, Jared and Miranda, Lisa (Paul) Hutcheon, Karin (Craig) Langendoen and children Emmerson, Reagan and Nixon, son Chris and numerous nieces and nephews.
Gary was predeceased by mother and father Susan and Harlan Nickell, daughter Kandaas Garen, siblings Vernon (Joy) Nickell, Eulalia (Lloyd) Sweet, Eileen (Ken) Baines and Max (Joy) Nickell, brothers-in-law George Wickett and Ken Aseltine and numerous nieces and nephews.
A Celebration of Gary's Life was held on Friday, July 2, 2021 at 11:00 a.m. in Kinsmen Park, Rosetown, SK.
Donations in memory of Gary may be made to the Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan, 301-2550 12th Avenue, Regina, SK, S4P 3X1 or to the Rosetown Minor Athletic Association, P.O. Box 1935, Rosetown, SK, S0L 2V0. To send online condolences please visit shanidarfuneralservices.com. Arrangements entrusted to Pierre A. Charpentier.
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