Eleanor (Ellie) Luise Nicolau, 88

Nov 16, 2021

Eleanor (Ellie) Luise Nicolau (née Weiss), 88, passed away peacefully on Monday, November 15, 2021, at her home in Wareham. Ellie was born December 7, 1932, and grew up in Stratford, CT. She is the daughter of the late Rudolf and Wilma Weiss. She attended Stratford High School and graduated in 1956 from New Haven State Teacher’s College.

Ellie married Anthero “Nick” Nicolau on June 22, 1957, and raised six children. They celebrated their 57th wedding anniversary before Nick passed in 2014. After meeting in college and marrying, they moved to Indiana for Nick to earn his master’s degree from IU. Ellie taught in the local elementary school in Eminence, IN, until moving back to New England so Nick could earn a PhD from Springfield College and to then find a coaching job.

Thus began a life of moving to support Nick’s 40-year career as a football coach. Starting in Wareham, they made many stops to college towns (New Haven CT, Springfield MA, Bridgeport CT, Amherst MA, Storrs CT, Lexington KY, Kent OH) before heading north to Canada to start his professional career in the CFL (Hamilton Ontario & Montreal Quebec) and then back to the US as Nick moved into the NFL (New Orleans, Denver, LA, Buffalo, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, San Diego and Pittsburgh). No matter where the job was, every summer was spent on Hamilton Beach in Wareham, where they eventually retired in 2000. Despite the many moves, Hamilton Beach remained the “home” to which they came back. 

Ellie was a loving wife, devoted mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. Her home was always open for family celebrations, holidays, visits from friends and her children’s friends. She developed deep friendships across many coaching staffs and in many neighborhoods, despite not being in any one spot for very long.

Ellie is survived by her loving six children: Tracey Wise (Thomas) of Lexington, KY; Duane Nicolau (Karen Snyder) of Scituate; Shari Williams of Duxbury; Vickie Adkinson (Philip) of Cincinnati, OH; Wendy Ruffing of Columbus, OH; and Randy Nicolau of Sarasota FL. Ellie is also lovingly remembered by her 14 grandchildren: Terra (Dave), Teri, Jen, Nick, Clay (Julie), Sara, Hailey, Michael, Jackson, Marshall, Mitchell, Owen, Max & Ethan; and 3 great grandchildren: Austin,  Emma & Eleanor. 

The family is grateful for the professional and compassionate care provided by Tender Hearts Home Health Care.

Ellie’s funeral will be on Monday, November 22, from Chapman Funerals & Cremations – Wareham, 2599 Cranberry Highway (Rt. 28), Wareham at 9 AM followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at St. Patrick’s Church, 94 High St., Wareham at 10 AM. Interment will be in St. Patrick’s Cemetery, Wareham.  Relatives and friends are invited to visit on Sunday, November 21, from 2 to 5 PM at the funeral home. 

In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions to the Joslin Diabetes Center, One Joslin Place, Suite 745, Boston, MA 02215 or on-line at www.joslin.org/give. For directions or to leave a message of condolence visit: www.chapmanfuneral.com