FORT KENT – Mon Signor Leopold G. Nicknair, 81, died this morning, Tuesday, March 25, 2014, in Fort Kent. Msgr. Nicknair “Fr. Nick” was born Oct. 3, 1932, in Eagle Lake, the son of Fred J. and Cecile (Labbe) Nicknair.
After graduating from St. Francis College, Biddeford, he completed his studies in philosophy and theology at Le Grand Séminaire de Saint-Sulpice, Montreal. He was ordained to the priesthood by the Most Reverend Daniel J. Feeney, May 31, 1958, at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Portland. His pastoral assignments included: St. Bernard’s Parish, Rockland (1958-61) – Parochial Vicar; Holy Rosary Parish, Caribou (1961-67) – Parochial Vicar; Newman Apostolate, Colby College, Waterville – Chaplain (1967-71); added Chaplain responsibilities at Thomas College, Waterville and Unity College, Unity (1970-71); Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Portland (1971-77) – Rector; St. Louis Parish, Fort Kent (1977-1986) – Pastor; Ss. Peter & Paul Parish, Lewiston (1986-1993) – Pastor; Holy Rosary Parish, Caribou (1993-2002) – Pastor; Added Pastor of St. Louis Parish, Limestone, and St. Denis Parish, Fort Fairfield (2001-2002); Temporary Administrator of St. Thomas Aquinas Parish, Madawaska (2002, after his retirement became effective). In addition, Msgr. Nicknair also served in the following capacities: Human Relations Services – Chaplain for District I (appointed 1975); member of the Diocesan Ecumenical Commission (1976-79); member of the Diocesan Priests Personnel Board (1977-80; 1981-84); Dean (Vicar Forane) of Deanery I in Northern Aroostook County (1980-1988); member of the Council of Priests (1984-89); member of the College of Consultors (1984-89); Associate Director of the Office of Vocations (1985-91); Dean (Vicar Forane) of Eastern Aroostook County (1993-97). At the time of his retirement, Bishop Joseph wrote, “It is my opinion that you are one of the most respected priests of the diocese both by your brothers, priests and the Bishops under whom you have served … ‘a sincere, dedicated and Christ-like priest who provided a loving and caring service to all parishioners.’ … If ever there is an example of what it means to be joyful in the service of the Lord, you are that person. By your very nature, you remind everyone who knows you that the Lord is truly in charge, and that His Kingdom, a Kingdom of life and love, and immortality, will eventually triumph. You have spread hope and good cheer in many ways during your priestly ministry among us.”
He is survived by his sister, Jacqueline and her husband, Richard Glennon of Exeter, N.H., and two sisters-in-law, Yolande Nicknair of Henniker, N.H., Lorette Nicknair of Presque of Isle; a cousin, Rev. Harold Nicknair of Portland. He is also survived by many nieces, nephews and cousins. In addition to both his parents, he was predeceased by six brothers, Valere, Gerald, Armand, Rev. Donald Leonil, Rev. Bernard, and Jean Lous Nicknair; four sisters, Bernadette Nicknair, Sister Marie Paul O.P., Bernice Ouellette, and Sister Jeanne D’arc D.W.; and one brother-in-law, Patrick Ouellette.
Reception of the Body 3 p.m. Thursday, March 27, 2014 at St. Louis Church of St. John Vianney Parish, Fort Kent. Visitation/Wake 3-5 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. Thursday, March 27, 2014 at St. Louis Church; 9-11 a.m. Friday, March 28, 2014 at St. Louis Church. A Mass of Christian Burial with Fourth degree honors will be celebrated 11 a.m. Friday, March 28, 2014 at St. Louis Church of St. John Vianney Parish, Fort Kent. Committal/Burial will be later in the spring at St. Mary’s Cemetery, Eagle Lake. In following with his wishes, in lieu of flowers, those who wish may donate to the Christian Life Center, P.O. Box 530, Frenchville, Me. 04745. Funeral services by Daigle Funeral Home, Fort Kent.