On Sunday, January 22, 2023, Dorthy D. (Chamberlain) Nichols passed away quietly at home with family in Rathdrum, Idaho, at the age of 87.
Dorthy was born October 7 in Scottsbluff, Nebraska, to William Earl Chamberlain and Bernice Louise (Warner) Chamberlain, the third of five children. Dorthy and her older brother Earl shared the same birthday. She grew up in and around LaGrange, Wyoming, participating in H-4, was active in many school events, a cheerleader, and played in the high school pep band. She graduated from LaGrange High School and then attended the University of Wyoming for a year. Dorthy then worked for United Telephone Company in Scottsbluff. It was there that she met her future husband, James E. Nichols, who was introduced to her an aunt and uncle living in Gering, Nebraska. Jim and Dorthy were married at the LaGrange Community Church in November 1955. Shortly after, they moved to Cheyenne, Wyoming, where they and raised two daughters, Patricia and Wendy, and lived there until Jim’s death. Dorthy remained in Cheyenne until her retirement, when she moved to live with her daughter and son-in-law, Patricia and John Duckworth, first to Great Falls, Montana, and later to Rathdrum, Idaho.
For most of her 55 years in Cheyenne, Dorthy worked for State Farm Insurance, as did Jim, first for the Harold Nichols agency and then after Harold’s retirement for the Rex Mauch agency. She often commented that she enjoyed the work; it was evident because she knew and remembered many people in Cheyenne. If you went out to a restaurant with her, it was very unusual if someone from the area didn’t come to the table and say hello.
In addition, Dorthy was active in the community as an elections judge and poll worker, helped for several years with the Sunday school at First Baptist Church, was active with the Republican Party in the Cheyenne area, and participated annually cancer fund raising walk-a-thons. More importantly, she was all about children. She was a Girl Scout troop leader, volunteered at Cheyenne Memorial Hospital in the pediatrics wing, volunteered in her daughters’ classrooms, participated in countless walk-a-thons to raise money for groups like the March of Dimes. During elections campaigns, she would say she wished all the candidates would take half their advertising money and donated it to groups that would feed hungry children. At the very top of her list were her grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, and nephews, remembering all their birthdays.
Though people were her priority, Dorthy was also an avid golfer and enjoyed crafts, having made Christmas stockings for each of her grandchildren. She kept up with people via the internet and sending cards and letters until illness and arthritis prevented her from using the computer.
Dorthy is preceded in death by her parents; her daughter Wendy Baur; a brother Earl Chamberlain; and a sister Darlene Schuppan. She is survived by her daughter, Patricia; a sister, Gen Ennis of Twin Falls, Idaho; a brother, Doug Chamberlain of LaGrange, Wyoming, six grandchildren, four great-grandchildren, and twelve nieces and nephews and more great nieces and nephews. A memorial service will be held on July 8 at 2pm at Schrader, Aragon, and Jacoby Funeral Home, 2222 Russell Avenue, Cheyenne, Wyoming.
Memorial gifts in can be made to Engage Church (5101 S. Freya, Spokane, WA 99223) or Advance Home and Hospice Care of Coeur d’Alene (1578 W. Riverstone Drive, Coeur d'Alene, ID 83814).