Dr. Joseph John Nickolas of Show Low, died Aug. 9, 2019, at his home surrounded by family. He was born Jan. 3, 1939, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to the late Joseph and Louise (Schmidt) Nickolas.
Joseph is survived by his wife, Jeri; brother Edward (and family) of Parkland, Pennsylvania, and, his son Paul and wife Amanda of Phoenix. He is also survived by four grandchildren, Kyle and Brin Nickolas of Fayetteville, West Virginia and Natalie and Emily Nickolas of Phoenix.
He was proceeded in death by his son, Jon Christopher Nickolas.
A lifelong student, Joseph attended Neshaminy High School in Langhorne, Pennsylvania, and later earned the bachelor's degree of science education from East Stroudsburg State College in Pennsylvania, followed by the master's degree of Natural Sciences from Arizona State University. He then received the PhD from Columbia Pacific University in California.
Joseph was a pioneering force in education in the White Mountains, teaching Biology courses at both Snowflake and Show Low high schools. Later he played a key role in developing curriculum and teaching at Northland Pioneer College for biology and anatomy/physiology. He remained active in education at NPC until his retirement as Faculty Professor Emeritus in 2005.
But above all, Joseph was a true Arizona Mountain Man and historian with all things related to the territorial days of Arizona and much of the early United States. He loved the outdoors and one of his most passionate activities was hiking in the mountains and enjoying walking in the footsteps of those that helped win the West. His love of the outdoors is also illustrated by his award of Eagle Scout and later the Silver Beaver from the Boy Scouts of America.
A private ceremony at his grave site was held Aug. 15, for immediate family members.
Owens Livingston Mortuary of Show Low handled arrangements.
For those who have special memories and would like to send private condolences or sign an online guest book, visit www.owenslivingstonmortuary.com