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Posted By Whitney & Murphy On November 25, 2011 @ 1:46 pm In Obituary | 3 Comments


George Nickas passed away at home on November 22, 2011. George was born on April 20, 1933 in Chicago to Mike and Bessie Nickas. He attended school in Maywood, IL, graduating from Proviso High School in 1951. At that time, he was the recipient of a Rector Scholarship to DePauw University. Upon graduating from DePauw, George was initiated into Phi Beta Kappa and entered University of Illinois Medical School. After receiving his medical degree in 1955, he interned at Illinois Central Hospital before entering the U.S. Navy as a medical officer. His naval service took him to Yokohama, Japan. It was here that he met Kathie Siegel, a teacher in the Navy Dependents’ School. George and Kathie were married in Yokohama on May 5, 1962.
Upon returning to the States, the young couple moved to Phoenix in the summer of 1962, where George completed his residency in Internal Medicine at St. Joseph’s Hospital. It was during this time that their first son was born. The family moved to Denver in 1965 where George took his fellowship in the young field of nephrology, the study of kidney disease. It was here that they welcomed their daughter. In 1966, they returned to Phoenix and he entered private practice in nephrology. He and his medical group pioneered the care of kidney dialysis and transplant patients in Arizona. In 1968, the last of the Nickas children arrived—another son. After retiring from private practice in 1990, George enrolled at ASU where he studied music, art, and history. Always an accomplished pianist, he developed his voice as well and sang in several choirs throughout his retirement years. Summers with the choirs brought him the opportunity to sing once in Carnegie Hall, and around the world, including Australia, Greece, and Italy. The things that George most enjoyed throughout his life were his family, his medical practice and his music. Surviving George are his wife, Kathie, and his children Mike (May Yen), Gigi (Tim) and Mark (Kristine). He also leaves five beloved grandchildren: Bereket, Monalisa, Daniel, William and Matthew. In addition, he is survived by his sister, Grace Russell. His Memorial Mass will be held Thursday, December 1, at 10 AM at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church, 4715 N. Central Avenue, Phoenix. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to St. Francis Elementary School Scholarship Fund or Doctors without Borders.

Condolences for the family of “NICKAS, GEORGE MICHAEL , M.D.”

Condolence from Christopher Bock on November 30th, 2011 8:25 am

Dr. George Nickas was a very positive influence in my life. He was creative, kind and generous. He was my close friend’s dad. He was also my first baseball coach and this must have been a very frustrating and thankless hobby for him. His patience and care left a permanent impression.

Michael and I grew up together and had many thrilling adventures. Mike respected his father and loved him deeply. He talked about him all the time. They both shared a great love of science, music and fine automobiles. I spent a great deal of time at the Nickas’s home, just ask them. They always had something ‘cool’ going on over there. George was a big part of this. He always encouraged adventure and discovery. Mike was the first kid I knew to get a chemistry set and electronics kit. These were sources of endless fun and occasional disappointment when we failed to produce an effective explosive or LASER. We learned so much in the Nickas home.

I am very sorry George had to leave us. He was a powerful inspiration. It was a privilege and honor to know him and I aspire to be as good a father as he was

Condolence from Angie and Edd Welsh on December 1st, 2011 8:57 am

We were so sorry to learn of George’s passing. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

We haven’t seen each other for many years but I will never forget your kindnesses after we lost Marti.

Condolence from Gail Gabel on July 8th, 2012 9:43 pm

I worked for Dr. Nickas in 1982-1984 in his Nephrology practice on Brill St. in Phoenix. A great guy, a wonderful boss and a well respected practice. I was only 25 years old then. Dr. Johson, Potter, Willams, Nickas and Smith…POMA group.

May God Bless the Nickas family. I’m so sorry to learn of his passing.

Gail G., RN

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