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E. Nickolas Bridges

October 20, 1932 February 24, 2010
E. Nickolas Bridges
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Obituary for E. Nickolas Bridges

E. Nickolas �Nick� Bridges, 0 false 18 pt 18 pt 0 0 false false false of Milford and Champion, Michigan, and a former resident of Negaunee, Michigan and Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, died on Wednesday, February 24, 2010 surrounded by his family after a long battle with Parkinson's Disease. He was 77 years old.

Nick was born on October 20, 1932 in Detroit to parents Charles Fern and Caroline (nee. Kurth) Bridges. He was raised in Walled Lake and was a graduate of Walled Lake High School. In order to continue his education in college, he worked a series of full and part-time jobs at the universities and at summer resorts. After completing his undergraduate studies at Michigan State University, Nick continued at Vanderbilt Law School. He transferred to Wayne State University Law School for his final year. Though his diploma read Wayne State University, he always said he got his legal education at Vanderbilt.

Nick met Marilyn Brink, the love of his life, while at Michigan State University. The couple was married on June 16, 1956 at Marilyn's family home in Holland, Michigan. They then lived in Nashville while Nick completed his second year at Vanderbilt and Marilyn taught elementary school.
Upon completing his education, an opportunity to work as Law Clerk for Michigan Supreme Court Justice and author, John D. Voelker while studying to pass the bar exam was the impetus for a move to Ishpeming, Michigan in the Upper Peninsula in 1958. After a couple of years, the young couple moved to Negaunee where Nick formed his first law firm, DeFant & Bridges with Michael DeFant. The practice later became Bridges & Collins, and is today Bridges & Bridges where his daughter Caroline practices law. He served as the Negaunee City Attorney for nearly 30 years and was a long-standing member of the State Bar of Michigan. Despite his blindness, and later developing Parkinson�s Disease, Nick was a successful and celebrated trial lawyer.
In 1978 Nick was appointed by the Governor as a charter member of the Michigan Commission for the Blind and served two terms helping to supervise all services to blind residents of the state.
He founded the first automated radio station in the Upper Peninsula, WUUN Stereo 100 of Marquette. Other interests included developing real estate including apartments, homes and commercial property and was instrumental in bringing a senior housing complex to Negaunee. Nick was also a long-term member of the Fraternal Order of Elks.

Nick was a devoted husband and a dedicated father known for his interesting family projects. From basic home repairs to raising chickens, he found many opportunities to provide �real life� experiences for his children. He always stressed the merits of hard work and a good education, commonly reinforced with the phrase, �Jobs that don�t get started don�t get finished.� He was known for his generosity helping members of the family, friends and acquaintances as well as Lutheran churches in Negaunee and Champion.

He is survived by Marilyn, his beloved wife of fifty-four years; daughters, Marilyn (Jeff) Keating of Austin, Texas and Caroline Bridges of Negaunee; sons, Nickolas E. (Sara) Bridges of Milford Twp. and Lloyd Bridges of Negaunee; and grandchildren, Matthew, Melanie, and Heather Keating. Brother of the late Charles (Violet), Richard (the late Rose), the late Lloyd (the late Barbara), Don (the late Shirley) Bridges; brother-in-law of William (the late Carol) Brink, the late Donald Robert Brink, and Sally Mellon; many nieces and nephews and dear friends. A Memorial Service will be held Saturday, February 27, 2010 at 2:00 PM at Lynch & Sons Funeral Home, 404 East Liberty Street, Milford. Chaplain Bob Finkbeiner of Arbor Hospice to officiate. Friends may gather from 1:00 until time of service. Memorial contributions encouraged to: Foundation Fighting Blindness and the Parkinson's Disease Foundation. For further information, please phone 248.684.6645.

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