Wayne Brackett Nicoll passed away peacefully at Concord Regional VNA Hospice House in Concord, Saturday, December 30, 2017, with his beloved wife Sally at his side.
Wayne was born in Concord on November 23, 1932, to Helen Frances Shurtleff and Maynard Wayne Brackett. His father passed away in 1935, and during his early years Wayne was raised by his adoring aunts. In 1943 his mother married Andrew M. Nicoll, a widower. Their union immediately gave Wayne an older brother, Andrew II, and a sister, Jean. At this point his name was legally changed to Wayne Brackett Nicoll.
Wayne graduated from Concord High in 1950 and attended UNH for three years, studying Geology. In 1953 he was appointed to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, where he excelled in track and field, becoming a four-year letterman in Cross Country. In retirement he would later serve as an Admissions Representative for the Academy. He graduated on June 4, 1957 with a commission as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Infantry. On that same day he married his longtime sweetheart, Sally Humphreys, in the Old Cadet Chapel. During their 60+ years of marriage they raised two children, Gregory Everett and Jemi Elizabeth Nicoll.
Over the years Wayne continued his love of distance running and later racewalking and snowshoe racing. He competed in four separate Olympic Trials as a racewalker. While stationed at Ft. Devens, MA in 1959, Wayne inspired an international competition for distance hiking when he completed a 104-mile trek from Camp Edwards on Cape Cod to Ft. Devens in 40 1/2 hours in combat gear with a rifle and full pack.
In 1961 he transferred from the Infantry to the Military Police Corps and was assigned to duty in Germany, where he served first in Frankfurt as Commander of A Company, 709th MP Battalion and afterward in West Berlin as Operations Officer for the Provost Marshal's Office at Checkpoint Charlie and along the then newly-constructed Berlin Wall. During his tour in the divided city, Wayne organized a highly successful running program for American youths. His teams excelled in German youth competitions and he was awarded the prestigious Sportabzeichen (""Sports Badge"") by the Berlin Police.
After relocating to the United States in 1966, Wayne settled in Augusta, Georgia. From there he was sent to Vietnam for two tours of duty (1967-1968 and 1972-1973), where he served as Deputy Provost Marshal of the U.S. Army's 23rd Infantry, which had been founded in New Caledonia and was thus known as the ""Americal"" Division.
As retirement drew near, Wayne completed a Masters Degree in Public Administration at the University of Georgia, and taught Criminal Justice courses part-time for various colleges and universities in Georgia, Alabama, and the Carolinas. After 20 years of Army service he retired in 1977 as a Lieutenant Colonel. He and Sally opened a store for runners from which they promoted footrace events throughout the Southeast.
Wayne became a pioneer in the establishment of technical standards for course measurement and accurate timing, receiving a rating of "Expert" from the International Athletic Federation (IAAF). His skills took him all over the United States, as well as to Jamaica and Mexico, where he performed measurements, validated records, and conducted training workshops. Among the over 500 race course measurements in which Wayne participated were The Boston and New York City Marathons, the 1988 Olympic Trials, and the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games. In 2015 he was honored with the first Ted Corbitt Award for his contributions to the technical aspects of Long Distance Running.
After moving back to New Hampshire, Wayne and Sally spent 27 years as residents at the historic Ragged Mountain Fish & Game Club in Andover, where Wayne enjoyed numerous outdoor activities. While hunting on snowshoes there during the afternoon of his 65th birthday, he dropped a 204-lb whitetail buck with a single shot from a handgun at a distance of 80 yards. A note Wayne wrote around that time includes his observation, ""I am living a very full and satisfying life with a wonderful partner.""
In 2015 Wayne and Sally returned to Concord, where Pleasant View Retirement became their home. Among Wayne's memberships were The Snowshoe Club, the West Augusta (GA) Rotary Club, USA Track & Field, American Legion and the Assoc. of the U.S. Army. His military decorations included the Army Occupation Medal (Berlin), Vietnam Campaign Ribbon with '60 Device, Army Commendation Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Bronze Star Medal, Joint Services Commendation Medal, Meritorious Service Award, and Legion of Merit.
His family members include wife, Sally Humphreys Nicoll; son, Gregory Everett Nicoll and his wife, Liz of Atlanta, Ga.; daughter, Jemi Elizabeth Broussard and her husband, Rick, of Concord; grandchildren, Daniel Broussard of Concord, Elizabeth Broussard of Jackson, Miss. and Eleanor Poirier and her husband, Michael Poirier; and great-granddaughter, Evangeline Marie Poirier, of Exeter. He was predeceased by his brother, Andrew Nicoll and sister, Jean Nicoll Schaller.
Interment with a graveside service will be held at the NH State Veterans Cemetery, Boscawen, in the spring. The family wishes to thank the nurses and staff of Concord VNA Hospice House for their kind and gentle care during his final two weeks.
Memorial donations may be made in Wayne's name to Hospice House, 240 Pleasant St., Concord, NH 03301 or to the Alzheimer's Association
MA/NH Office, 309 Waverley Oaks Road, Waltham, MA 02452, where "Our Vision is a World Without Alzheimer's."
Arrangements are entrusted to the Bennett Funeral Home of Concord. Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at BennettFuneral.com
for the Nicoll family.