Community mourns loss of Tyler Nickerson, 12

Boy a standout player with Colfax Jr. Falcons football
By: Mike Ray, Gold Country News Service
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The Colfax community was united in mourning this week following the tragic death Sunday of Tyler Nickerson, 12. Tyler, the son of longtime area residents Eldwin and Melissa Nickerson, died following a backyard swimming accident at his home in Meadow Vista. According to Placer County Sheriff’s Office reports, on Aug. 5 Tyler jumped or dove into the pool at his home and after others noted he was unresponsive, they called 911. The child was taken by American Medical Response (AMR) ambulance to Sutter Auburn Faith Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. “It was accidental,” said Placer County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Lt. Mark Reed. “There was no foul play – just a tragic accident.” Tyler was born on Jan. 1, 2000. “He was the first baby boy born at Sutter Auburn Faith Hospital in the New Year and new decade. … he and one other girl,” said Sheila Gillmore, a friend and co-worker at Campora Propane in Weimar with Tyler’s mother. Preparing to enter the seventh grade at Weimar Hills School this month, Tyler was popular with his classmates and a standout in football, basketball and baseball. A two-way lineman for the Colfax Jr. Falcons, the local youth football program cancelled practices on Monday in memory of Tyler. League officials brought in Placer Sheriff’s chaplains on Monday to help his teammates and families deal with the tragedy. “It was very positive,” said Jr. Falcons president Casey McGlothlan. “It’s a devastating loss. I’ve been involved with the Jr. Falcons now for seven years and the Nickerson family, all the way from Tyler to his mom and dad, have given 110 percent in everything they did.” McGlothlan confirmed on Tuesday that a proposal will be voted on to retire Tyler’s No. 60 jersey from the Jr. Falcons’ program. “It’s just a matter of taking the vote; it will be done,” McGlothlan said. A member of the Sierra Foothill Little League Major Division All-Stars this past season, Tyler was a top hitter and fielder for the Giants during the regular season. “Of all the kids that I have ever coached, Tyler was just the best — hard working, selfless with a real competitive spirit that is rare for kids so young,” said Giants manager Marty Swan, who had coached Tyler since T-ball. “He was a true team player that was loved by all his teammates,” Swan said. “When he smiled he would light up the ball field.” In addition to his parents, Tyler is survived by sisters, Desiree Restor-Mackay, 20, and Lauryn Nickerson 2 ½; cousins, Teaven Nickerson, 7 ½, and Teaona Nickerson, 4 and a nephew, Baylee Mackay. His grandparents are Sam and Rachel Nickerson, of Colfax; Carol and Mike Gaines, of the Weimar Country Store; and Robert Restor, of Southern California. Services will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, Aug. 10, at Lassila Funeral Chapel, 551 Grass Valley Highway, in Auburn. There will be a graveside service at 11:30 a.m. at the New Auburn Cemetery, 1040 Collins Drive, also in Auburn. A memorial gathering will take place at Meadow Vista Park following the graveside service. According to Gillmore, an account has been established to help the family with funeral expenses. Donations can be made to the Tyler Nickerson Memorial Fund at U.S. Bank, P.O. Box 1093, Colfax 95713. Colfax Record Editor Martha Garcia contributed to this report.