Roger O. Nichols, 76, a lifelong resident of Woonsocket, passed to eternal life on Wednesday, November, 18, 2020, in St. Antoine’s Residence, North Smithfield, after having bravely battled Alzheimer’s for 12 years, and ultimately losing his life to COVID-19.
He was the son of late Edmond and Germaine (Lescarbeau) Nichols. He is predeceased by his sister Pauline Larue and brother Paul Nichols.
Roger was married to Olive D. (Charette) Nichols for 57 years. Olive was a constant advocate and loving caregiver to Roger throughout his battle with Alzhiemer’s. Roger also had a strong Catholic faith and was a parishioner of St. Agatha’s Church.
Roger started his working career at a young age in the Mills of Woonsocket, moving onto the Foundry and later at General Dynamics in Quincy, MA where he started as a rigger and worked there until the shipyard closed. At the age of 20, he became the youngest crane operator ever seen in the yard. In 1984, the heaviest lift at that time in the history of the United States was made when the deck house for Hull 61 was lifted out of #7 Basin and landed on the ship. This 1110 ton lift was accomplished with Roger’s effort and talent as he manned the controls of the Goliath crane.
Roger was a wonderful and loving husband, father, and grandfather. He loved life and treasured all the memories he made with family and friends. He was his daughter’s first love and was always there to cheer on his sons at hockey and football games. He was a Bruins and Patriots Fan. In his younger years he enjoyed camping and boating with his family at Echo Lake, and later with his grandchildren across New England. Taking rides with Olive on his Harley Davidson motorcycle was a true enjoyment, as well as traveling in their RV. His grandchildren gave him a renewed purpose and he was always playful with them. You could always count on Grandpa to go on rides at the amusement park, or just for a good laugh!
In addition to his beloved wife, he leaves his loving family; son Daniel Nichols of Johnston, RI and his children Olivia, Jacob and Ryan Nichols; daughter Sharon Ethier and her husband David of Averill Park, NY, their children Amber (Ethier) Jeffer and Micaela (Ethier) Vanderzyden; son Bryan Nichols of Alpharetta, GA and his children Alexandria and Christian Nichols. Two great-grandchildren: Tessa and Tanner Jeffer.
Private funeral arrangements are under the direction of Holt Funeral Home, 510 So. Main St., Woonsocket. The family welcomes donations to the Alzheimer’s Association, 245 Waterman St. #306, Providence, RI 02906 in memory of Roger as an expression of sympathy in lieu of flowers.
“I’m no longer by your side but there’s no need to weep; I’ve left sweet recollections I’m hoping you will keep. Don’t let your heart be heavy or burdened down with care; All the times we loved and laughed are moments we still share. Eternal joy and happiness stay in our hearts forever; Strengthening our special bond that even death can’t sever. Now it’s time to journey on and let your faith be strong, For I’m in a better place- I’m Home where I belong. So if sadness finds you as evening hides the day, Don’t despair, for I am there- Just A Memory Away!” ~Rita S. Beer
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