Sonja Jo Nichols, age 67, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, September 4, 2019, at Sharon S. Richardson Community Hospice in Sheboygan Falls, with her loving husband Kerry and brother John by her side.
She was born March 21, 1952, in Sheboygan, to John and Edna Hoenick. She was a 1971 grad of Sheboygan North High School. She married Kerry Clifford Nichols on September 23, 1977. After many years of working odd jobs and raising four sons (Shawn, Simon, Aaron, and Andrew), she decided to go back to school where she received her bachelor degree from Lakeland College. She would later further her education and receive a Masters of Arts in Urban Special Education from Cardinal Stritch University. She worked as a special needs teacher for many years at North and Central High Schools in Sheboygan, until she was diagnosed with Interstitial Pulmonary Fibrosis 6 years ago and forced to retire early. She loved working with all her students and they loved her. She would go above and beyond for them (often spending her personal time) to make sure each student received the attention they needed and made sure they were the best person they could be. During her retirement, she spent her time with her animals (dogs, cats, and horses), nieces, and nephews (oh yeah, her husband too).
She was an avid gardener, spending hours in her flower and vegetable gardens. It was rare if you pulled up to the farm and Sonja wasn't outside gardening or taking a walk with the dog. Then 28 months ago, a very welcomed and wonderful surprise came into her life, her first and only grandson, Allen. Despite her condition (which you wouldn't be able to tell if you met her), she would babysit Allen 3 times a week (frequently more) and he loved the rides she would take him on in the put-put. She loved and cherished her time with him, watching him grow, his first steps, and first words (Allen would call her Bama). Sonja had an uncanny ability to keep her inner child alive and used it to reach people in a deep and positive way.
She is survived by her husband of 42 years, Kerry; sons, Simon Nichols (daughter in-law Crissy), Aaron Nichols (daughter in-law Katie); brother, John Hoenick; grandson, Allen Nichols; and many nieces and nephews (literally hundreds of them). Sonja was preceded in death by her parents and two sons, Shawn Lee Nichols and Andrew Clifford Nichols.
Please join us to celebrate this wonderful soul on September 14th at 1pm. at: The Lake House on Cedar Lake: 14136 Cedar Lake Road Kiel, Wisconsin 53042.
14136 Cedar Lake Road
Kiel, WI 53042