ForeverMissed
Tributes
Posted by Pam Dodd on October 6, 2020
Mr. Nicholson, thank you so very much for 8 years of beautiful shows for us to watch our boys perform in. Your work made a huge positive impact in our sons’ lives and gave us all so much to be proud of. The Dodd family will never forget your talent and support you so lovingly shared with us. The experiences you created allowed our sons to follow their passion and happily enjoy success in so many aspects of their lives. We will miss you and could never thank you enough.
Posted by Drew Ross on October 5, 2020
Bob - It is so hard to imagine a world without you in it. I always respected the work you did as a designer, instructor, and administrator with AIA. It was so fun to cap off my last three years at Chantilly with you running our guard program. Between the rehearsals, competitions and trips, you were always "on" and made everyone better. In between, you always told hilarious stories and kept me laughing!

There is no doubt that you played a giant role in our competitive success. Your input made a world of difference and I am so thankful that you were a part of the program. You made a huge impact on every student you taught and because of that your legacy will live on!
Posted by Liz Calvert on October 2, 2020
Bob — I always enjoyed our conversations about band, music and specifically DCI. Your company, humor, honesty, straightforwardness and passion will always be things I remember when I think of you. Rest In Peace dear man. May you find the Corp of your dreams!
Posted by Hilary Kurland on October 2, 2020
Thank you Bob for recruiting me for one of my first teaching jobs after college and keeping me a part of the colorguard community in a time when I had resolved to leave it. I wouldn’t be where am I now if I had left the performance world back then. You taught me a great deal about show design and I was always amazed at how easily you could layer choreography into something spectacular. You made an impact on my life that won’t be forgotten.
Posted by Brandy Carter on October 2, 2020
Thank you for always being so kind, our students loved you!
Posted by Briana Frasnelli on October 2, 2020
Thank you for being able to take me out of a moment, to step outside the day's toils and find something to smile about. Your quick wit and poignant commentary was always something reliable on the days when I couldn't get out of my own head. You lit this world brightly and your light will continue to glow in all of the paths that you have contributed to. Rest easy.
Posted by Stephen Mark on October 2, 2020
Bob was one of those people you meet that has the ability to leave a mark on your life.

Working with him at JMHS was truly an honor. His creativity and enthusiasm for the pageantry arts was completely unparalleled and I am so happy that I was able to call him my friend. 

I will forever miss his quick humor and loving sassiness.
Posted by Friderike Butler on October 2, 2020
Bob - We miss you and your beloved pugs so much. The house feels hollow. Looking at our competing tomato plants makes me sad and it also makes me smile. You didn't tell me that tomato plants want to be the only plant in planter until there was not catching up with your gardening skills. :)
I will miss the miles of colorful fabric turning into stunning flags in your apartment. Our conversations on the patio. Gracie Lou's antics.
We are grateful for amazing memories with JMHS Band for 4 years. You were a one-of-a-kind human being and I still can quite process that you are gone.
We will cherish you and what you have given our family forever.
Your pugs are well-taken care of - we made sure of that. Love and light to you, Bob!
Posted by Sue Colwell on October 2, 2020
A world without Bob is a less colorful place.
For eleven years I would brainstorm with Bob to create color guard costumes for JMHS. It was an honor to be a part of the magic Bob created with his guard teams.
I enjoyed Bob's wicked sense of humor and his wonderful laughter. He will be sincerely missed.
Rest in peace Bob
Posted by Eric Dowty on October 2, 2020
I met Bob Nicholson in 1999 when he was my colorguard instructor in high school. After graduating I went on to teach with him for many years and I learned so much from him during our time together. We spent many a long night sewing flags, building props, designing shows, or just watching old WGI videos while eating pizza. We always ordered two separate ones because Bob LOVED anchovies on his pizza. He was always super encouraging in my endeavors and I do not know where I would be without him today.

Bob became a major mentor to me when I began teaching colorguard on my own, even as our schools competed against each other. I cannot express the impact this man has had on my life and now he is gone. 

Rest in peace Mr. Bob.
Posted by Clara Luckett on October 2, 2020
As a Guard parent, I had the pleasure of watching Bob and the Color Guard in action, both at practices and at competitions. As a full-time Instructional Assistant, it must not have been easy for Bob, juggling his school and coaching duties. Yet his vision and coaching contributed to performances that were always stellar. My sister (from San Francisco) saw a Madison Marching Band/ Color Guard show and asked who were the professionals that Madison hired to choreograph the show; well, Bob was responsible for choreographing the Color Guard, including their many accessories (flags, etc). Also, she commented about the Band music and Guard performances meshing well together; she said in San Francisco, the audience in the bleachers sometimes don't pay attention to the half-time shows. However, she couldn't take her eyes off the Madison Marching Band/Guard show due to the exciting sights & sounds!  Finally, Bob frequently "told it like it is". Although many a student didn't want to hear his constructive criticism, later I frequently overheard students say that Bob was right, i.e., his pushing resulted in many students giving amazing performances that they previously thought they couldn't do. So underneath his sometimes-gruff exterior, he really cared about the students. Bob, you are already deeply missed. May you know how much you mean to all of us. RIP.
Posted by David Wolf on September 30, 2020
For the 10 years I was at Madison, Bob was always supportive and a wonderful colleague. The more I got to know Bob, the more I enjoyed working with him. He always told it like it was, whether you wanted to hear it or not. His standards were high and his outstanding color guard program at JMHS is a reflection of that. It’s hard to imagine Bob not being part of the Madison Band program. It was an honor to work with you, Bob. Rest easy.
Posted by John Kenny on September 30, 2020
Bob - You certainly made an indelible mark on Madison! By day, you showed an unwavering level of compassion and patience with your students and by night, you were the mastermind behind the creative performances the color guard performed year after year. Your commitment to the Color guard was evident in the number of hours you devoted to them for practice, competitions and performances. Your impact on Madison will continue for many years to come.
Posted by Ann-Marie Johnson on September 30, 2020
Bob's artistic vision for the marching ensemble program amazed me year after year. As a parent of a band kid, I know that Bob touched many hundreds of young lives in a meaningful way. He leaves a legacy in each of those students that will grow over the coming decades. Bob will be deeply missed and leaves a hole in our hearts and in our community. 
Posted by James Hagen on September 30, 2020
I got to know him when I was in school it was a great pleasure knowing him I'm sorry for your loss James Hagen
Posted by Tom Shrump on September 29, 2020
I had the pleasure getting to know Bob at many BOA and WGI Pittsburgh regionals he attended with his guards. Enjoyed getting to see him at the events and having a chance to chat with him. Great guy who had great passion for the marching arts activity and the impact it (as well as himself) had on his students.  Truly enjoyed our conversations and will miss him dearly. Until we meet again!

Tom Shrump
(Norwin High School)
Posted by Sylvia Martin on September 29, 2020
I had the great pleasure of knowing and working with Bob for the four years I served on the executive committee of the Madison band booster. We shared a love of high fashion and liked many of the same high fashion designers and haute couture. He liked to watch "Absolutely Fabulous," which is a British show about the London fashion scene. We had frequent conversations about special fabrics and heavily beaded and gilded haute couture pieces that we both admired. His interest in high fashion certainly informed his vision of the bullfighter costume for the "Bullero" marching show. Bob had probably memorized the entire Pantone palette, and for him, blue was not just blue but rather was cornflower or periwinkle. Bob, we will miss your creativity, vision, and the color you added to our lives. I will miss our discussions of Christian Lacroix and Karl Lagerfeld. May you rest in peace.
Posted by Mohamad Rashid on September 29, 2020
I could talk to him
Posted by Patrick Massey on September 29, 2020
Bob- I still cannot believe you are not with us anymore! You were always very nice to everyone you came in contact with, and I will never forget the joy you would bring everyday. It was easy to see how much of an impact you made on all the students and colleagues around you on a daily basis. You also made such a large impact on the color guard team as well! Madison will truly not be the same when we get back into the building. Rest easy Bob!
Posted by Carol Dembicki on September 28, 2020
My heart is so heavy. Bob, you were always a light of laughter and warmth at Madison for so many people.

Bob loved his Colorguard. He was tough on the Colorguard because he respected and cherished the young men and women who rose to the level. Parents of the marching band from other schools always asked me about Madison’s marching band secret. My response – two things, the combo of Bob and Len H. plus a dedicated group of MAD students who spent countless hours practicing all year.

I realized how truly amazing the MAD Colorguard was when my friend from South Lakes, whose daughter plays trumpet in their band, described a marching competition last fall. She said that people came running back to the bleachers when the announcer asked Madison to take the field. Everyone was excited to see the MAD band. I asked her what she thought about our crew, and she could only talk about the Colorguard.

You will forever be missed and always loved.
Posted by Susan Petrovich on September 28, 2020
I worked with Bob as a parent volunteer, helping with uniforms for guard and band. Bob always had a strong vision which would usually turn into a sewing challenge for me and the uniform crew - whether it was drapes lined in red fabric that seemed to melt when you touched it, to shiney black stretch vinyl to bug antennae. Bob - thank you for trusting me to help make your vision come true.
Posted by Dan Blanchet on September 28, 2020
Bob - we weren't very close, but I always enjoyed seeing you and appreciated that you took the time to say hello in the hallways, or chat briefly when we were both hanging around in 143. I know you had a big impact on many students at Madison over the years and your presence will be missed. May your spirit continue to stay with us at JMHS to guide us and inspire us.

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