Diane (Wapples) Nichols
July 6, 1958-October 16, 2020 (aged 62)
Sturbridge- Diane (Wapples) Nichols, 62, resided in Sturbridge and Brookfield since moving to America with her family in 1996. Diane was born in Hemsworth, South Yorkshire, England. She was the daughter of a coal miner, Ronald and care worker, Muriel. Diane grew up with one sister, Susan Millingham who resides in Ludlow, England with her husband Steve. Diane loved to swim and was an accomplished amateur breaststroke competitor. Diane had a love of music throughout her life, beginning with the violin as a child. This later grew and was instilled in Rachael, Isaac and Jacob. Diane was a member of multiple choirs, most recent being BAMS. She also enjoyed her time performing with Brimfield Bells, one of her greatest experiences was playing at Carnegie Hall in New York City. Diane also began playing the cello two years ago furthering her lifelong passion of music.
Diane enjoyed her time on the tennis courts, playing with Rob, Rachael and Jacob. She was lovingly known as “Cricket” on the softball field in Brookfield where she played with Pollie. But her greatest sports legacy was being everyone’s most vocal cheerleader found on many a sideline cheering on her husband, children, and grandchildren as well as their teammates.
Diane was an active participant within the community on many levels starting by leading Girl Scouts for both Pollie and Rachael, volunteering as a Sunday School teacher and later becoming the coordinator. Diane was an active member of Holy Trinity Episcopal Church of Southbridge where she was the United Thank offering Coordinator for the Diocese of Western Massachusetts and Program Chair for Province 1 Episcopal Church Women. She enjoyed reading at church and being part of the church family. Diane was an amazing advocate for seniors through her job as the Director of North Brookfield Senior Center where she planned many new programs, events, and initiatives.
Diane’s real passion was literature. She enjoyed many trips to all the unusual and quaint bookstores throughout New England. She also enjoyed her trips to the Scholastic Store to instill her passion in her grandchildren. It is well known that Diane had a love of Winnie the Pooh, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Rabbit and Paddington Bear. She passed these on to her children and grandchildren through books and movies. Diane also enjoyed many other hobbies including spending time in her flower garden, bird watching and exploring new destinations with Rob. Diane spent time with her grandchildren as often as she could and enjoyed attending plays, shows and unique events with them. She talked about her children and grandchildren often and to anyone that would listen, they were what she was proud of the most.
Diane was predeceased by her father Ronald. She leaves behind her husband of 29 years, Robert; her children Laura (Pollie) Coulombe and her husband Brian, Rachael Estes and her husband Andrew, Isaac Nichols and his girlfriend Michelle and Jacob Nichols and his girlfriend Camilla. Diane also leaves behind her grandchildren Taima-Jay, Lily and Ethan Coulombe and her sister Susan Millingham and her husband Steve and her mother Muriel Heap and her husband Paul.
Calling hours will be held at Sansoucy Funeral Home, 40 Marcy St, Southbridge, MA on Wednesday, October 21 from 4 to 6pm. A Celebration of Diane’s Life will be held virtually by Fr. Richard at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church of Southbridge on Saturday, October 24 at 1pm.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to: Friends of the North Brookfield Council on Aging Inc., 29 Forest St, North Brookfield MA 01535 or Holy Trinity Episcopal Church of Southbridge 446 Hamilton St, Southbridge, MA 01550.
“If there ever comes a day,
when we can’t be together,
keep me in your heart,
I’ll stay there forever.”
Two Mary Oliver poems read at Diane’s Celebration of Life
Song for Autumn
Don’t you imagine the leaves dream now
how comfortable it will be to touch
the earth instead of the
nothingness of the air and the endless
freshets of wind? And don’t you think
the trees, especially those with
mossy hollows, are beginning to look for
the birds that will come—six, a dozen—to sleep
inside their bodies? And don’t you hear
the goldenrod whispering goodbye,
the everlasting being crowned with the first
tuffets of snow? The pond
stiffens and the white field over which
the fox runs so quickly brings out
its long blue shadows. The wind wags
its many tails. And in the evening
the piled firewood shifts a little,
longing to be on its way. Mary Oliver
Be still, my soul, and steadfast.
Earth and heaven both are still watching
though time is draining from the clock
and your walk, that was confident and quick,
has become slow.
So, be slow if you must, but let
the heart still play its true part.
Love still as once you loved, deeply
and without patience. Let God and the world
know you are grateful.
That the gift has been given. Mary Oliver