Kathleen Morrison Nickens
July 28, 1949 – May 24, 2019
Kathleen Morrison Nickens (née Mary Kathleen Morrison) passed away peacefully at Tucson Medical Center on May 24, 2019, following a courageous three-year battle with breast cancer.
Kathy was born July 28, 1949 in Liberal, KS to Estelle Mae Graves and George Robert Morrison. When her parents married in San Diego, CA in February 1942, her father was in the coastal artillery at Fort Rosecrans helping to provide defense of the harbor. He later served in Patton’s 4th Armored Division in France and Germany. Her mother was a “Rosie the Riveter” there, working on Consolidated B-24 liberator bombers. Both parents preceded her in death, her father in 1967 and her mother in 2006.
Kathy grew up on a small farm in Southwestern Kansas near the town of Liberal. A majority of her childhood memories and stories came from her five years on the “farm” and her early grade school years in the small nearby town of Plains. As a teenager, Kathy and her family relocated from Liberal to Boulder, CO, where she graduated from Fairview High School before attending the University of Colorado. It was there that she met her husband, Paul. Married in 1968, the couple raised three beautiful children and celebrated their 51st anniversary together in March 2019. She is survived by her husband and children, from oldest to youngest: Lisa of Denver, CO, Laura (Joshua) of Eugene, OR, and Gregory (Kira) of Tucson, AZ. She is also survived by five grandchildren: Taylor, Tristan, Logan, Estelle, and Maxwell.
She was employed in various office administrative positions in four different states during her working career. Her various interests included bowling, tole painting, crocheting, and buying/selling antiques and Southwestern Native American jewelry. She and her husband owned Sabino Books & Antiques for nearly 20 years, setting up annually at dozens of Western and Native American arts and antiques shows and antiquarian book events throughout AZ, NM, CA, TX, and CO. In retirement, she and Paul traveled extensively in the U.S, Canada, Mexico, and Australia. Over the past 12 years, they dedicated considerable effort to document and record their family genealogies, travelling and completing archival research throughout the U.S. and in Nova Scotia. Together, the couple authored numerous family history reports for individual family lines and published several books and articles on other topics.
We will celebrate her life on Saturday, June 22, 2019, at 10:00AM at Marana Mortuary Chapel in Marana, AZ. A private burial will be conducted on Tuesday, June 4, 2019 at the Arizona Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery at Marana.
In lieu of flowers, those interested are instead encouraged to offer a donation in Kathy’s name to the Arizona Oncology Foundation, Tucson, AZ, where she received treatments.