Mystic, CT--Verna Ann Nick, aged 92, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, January 21st in Mystic, CT. Verna was born on July 7, 1927 in Bradford, PA to Neal Vernon Troup and Grace Hoover Troup. She married Bernard Charles Nick on November 26, 1949 and they had eight children. Verna was pre-deceased by her husband, Bernard and her daughter, Beth Ann Craig.
Verna grew up during the Great Depression. When she was three her father died in an accident. His passing required Verna and her mother to live on her grandparent’s small farm in PA. Verna loved farm life because she was “free as a bird.” While still young Verna’s mother found work in nearby Kane, and they moved to a cold-water flat there at a rent of $8 per month. Their new residence was a blessing. There Verna met her second family, the Gunnerson’s. They were Swedish immigrants and Verna later wrote “you must know about them, they were so much a part of my life!” Unofficially, Sweden became part of Verna’s nationality.
Verna’s favorite subject in high school was art, which she pursued in the second half of her life. After her marriage to Bernard, they started a family in Indiana, moved back to Pennsylvania, then to New Jersey and eventually to Stafford Springs, CT where the family resided for many years. It was in Stafford that Verna began to paint in earnest, creating an art “studio” out of the downstairs bedroom. Verna favored landscapes and natural scenes and her painting of “The Five Cousins” looking onto the CT River is much admired in the family. Verna’s primary profession, as she wryly stated, was “household engineer.” She managed a home of eight children, her spouse, various pets and many friends with a sense of humor and steady grace.
Verna acquired essential values from her mother and the Gunnerson’s which she practiced in her role as “household engineer.” Hard work, faith, the ability to manage money, the importance of family and friends, and clean living were the principles which guided her through life. She especially enjoyed her gardens, reading, and the simple act of being together with family. But she was most proud of “raising my children to be caring people and good citizens.”
Verna leaves behind her daughter, Susan (Tom) Zimecki of Edgewater Park, NJ; son-in-law John Craig of North Stonington, CT; daughter, Frances Graham of Stafford Springs, CT; daughter, Jill (Rick) Hower of Delanco, NJ; son, Randy Nick of Broad Brook, CT; son, Matthew (Lucy) Nick of Stonington, CT; son, Brian (Pamela) Nick of Suffield, CT; and son, Joel (Cindy) Nick of Middlefield, CT. she is also survived by her beloved grandchildren, Danielle (Duane) Fennimore, Thaddeus (Julie) Zimecki, Ann Elizabeth (Joe) Tyler, Taylor Craig, Phillip Graham, Luis (Vanessa) Graham, Daniela Alzate–Molina, Eva Nick, Lukas Nick, Alexandra Nick, Elizabeth Nick, and six great-grandchildren.
“I thank you all for the love you have shown, but now it is time I travel on alone. So grieve for me a while if you must, then let your grief be comforted with trust. It is only for a while that we part, so bless the memories within your heart.” And then, when you come this way alone, I’ll greet you with a smile and a ‘Welcome home.’”
Calling hours at the Mystic Funeral Home located on Rt. 1 will be on Sunday, January 26th from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm. Visitation will also be held on Monday, Jan. 27th, from 7-9 PM at Hartle-Tarbox Funeral Homes, Inc., Smethport. A mass of Christian burial will be held on Tuesday, January 28th at 10 AM in St. Elizabeth Church in Smethport, PA. Burial will be in St. Elizabeth Cemetery, Smethport.
Contributions in memory of Verna may be sent to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. Online condolences may be made at www.hartle-tarboxfuneralhomes.com.
Local arrangements are under the direction of the Hartle-Tarbox Funeral Homes, Inc., Smethport.