Cover photo for Dennis Charles Nichols's Obituary
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1952 Dennis 2024

Dennis Charles Nichols

July 26, 1952 — March 2, 2024

Dennis Charles Nichols, (71), of Amarillo, TX, passed away on March 2, 2024, at the Amarillo VA Welcome Home Unit. He was born on July 26, 1952, in Connersville, IN, to Charles (Chuck) and Geneva Nichols.

He graduated from Connersville High School in 1970 and went on to serve in the United States Navy as a machinist from (1975-1979) on the USS Enterprise. While on deployment to the Philippines, he met the love of his life, Victoria. The two married on July 13, 1979, in National City, California. They later moved to Phoenix, AZ, where they had their two daughters, Andrea and Ann. Dennis holds a bachelor’s degree in Management of Human Resources from the University of New York (1993), and a Master’s degree in Instructional and Performance Technology from Boise State University (2000). Dennis worked for several nuclear plants, from Palo Verde in Phoenix to Pantex in Amarillo, and finally retired from the Nevada Test Site near Las Vegas where he retired in 2019.

Dennis and Victoria moved back to Amarillo after retirement to be closer to family. Dennis was known for his stoic demeanor and earned the loving nickname of Grumpy. That nickname was quickly replaced with “Lolo '' when his grandkids came along. Dennis had a natural talent for drawing and baking. He was an avid nerd of sci-fi, particularly of Star Trek and Star Wars. He enjoyed hunting, fishing and golfing with his friends in earlier years, as well as playing video games.  After his Parkinson’s diagnosis, he got involved in boxing as part of his therapy.  He helped found the boxing club for people with Parkinson’s with Nick’s Fight Club and was a member of the Amarillo Genealogical Society. In retirement he focused on his family’s genealogical history, finding documentation as far as four generations back. Intelligent is a word often used to describe Dennis. Even after Parkinson’s and dementia took over his mind and body, he still managed to hang on to his quick wit and sarcasm. To the very end, he still remembered his family through the fog of dementia. His devoted wife, Vicky, was by his side holding his hand until his final breath.

Dennis is survived by Vicky, his wife of 44 years; their two daughters, Andrea Cruz and Ricardo of Amarillo; Ann Burge and Travis of Lubbock; two grandchildren, Ava and Santana; sister, Karen Jack of Connersville; two nieces, Jen Cerneant and Amy King of Connersville; nephew, Jamie Harry of Connersville.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Charles and Geneva; uncles, Paul and John Nichols, Hubert W., Evan, and Chester Wilson; aunts, Lucille Strong, Mary Shaw, Elaine Turner and Verna Brunner; sister, Cheryl Harry; and nephew, Bobby Harry.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Disabled American Veterans organization, Michael J. Fox Foundation

https://www.michaeljfox.org / or the Southwest Parkinson’s Society.

Services will be held at LaGrone Blackburn-Shaw, 8310 South Coulter Road, Amarillo, TX.  Visitation will be held Thursday, March 14, 2024 from 2:00-6:00 pm.  The memorial service will be held on Friday, March 15, 2024, at 2:00 pm with a small reception held after the service.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Dennis Charles Nichols, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Thursday, March 14, 2024

2:00 - 6:00 pm (Central time)

LaGrone Blackburn Shaw Coulter Road Chapel

TX

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Memorial Service

Friday, March 15, 2024

Starts at 2:00 pm (Central time)

LaGrone Blackburn Shaw Coulter Road Chapel

TX

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