Frank Elbert Nichols

April 7, 1942 ~ December 21, 2021 (age 79)

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TUPELO – Frank Albert Nichols, Jr. practiced vascular surgery with precision, professionalism and unquestioned skill for over 45 years, spending much of that time in Tupelo at North Miss. Medical Center.  Dr. Nichols was born in Washington D.C. and grew up on his family’s ranch in Wyoming on April 7, 1942.  Always a cowboy at heart, Doc completed his undergraduate degree in pre-med from the University of Wyoming.  He furthered his medical education at the University of Chicago and completed fellowships at NASA and Johns Hopkins University Medical Center in Baltimore. He did a 7 year residency at the University of Rochester, New York where he excelled in Cardio-Vascular Surgery.  The Chairman of the Cardiology Department said that Dr. Nichol’s tenure at the University of Rochester was marked by the lowest mortality rate in the hospital’s history at that time.  He met and married his wife Caren and they were residents at the University of Rochester, shared professors, jointly published and shared practice together for 40 years at NMMC. Doc had a “teacher of teachers” ethos, was completely devoted to the wellbeing of his patients and always exhibited a heart of love.  A fabulous storyteller, Frank had a straightforward, dry wit, practiced humility and had impeccable character. An animal lover especially dogs, Doc was a giant in the field Vascular Surgery and his legacy will be that of a practical man whose life gave life to so many others.

A private family only service will be held due to precautions of Covid.  The service may be viewed at 4 PM Wednesday, January 12 at and will be archived thereafter for viewing.  Holland Funeral Directors is honored to be serving the family.

Dr. Nichols is survived by his wife of 52 years, Caren Nichols of Tupelo; daughter, Penny Mayer (Dr. Jonathan Mayer) of California and grandchildren, Gabriel Mayer, Molli, and Meryn Mayer all of California.   He was preceded in death by his parents and his beloved son, Matthew in l989.

Memorials may be made to the Tupelo-Lee Animal Shelter, P. O. Box 2143, Tupelo, MS 38802.  Condolences may be e mailed to

4 thoughts on “Frank Elbert Nichols”

  1. Dear Nichols family, I’m sorry for your loss and you have my deepest condolences. The loss of a loved one brings great pain and sorrow but you can gain comfort from Gods word the Bible. Acts 24:15 says “There is going to be a resurrection” so you can see your dear loved one again. A promise from our loving Heavenly Father. I hope this was a source of encouragement for the family.

  2. Worked with Dr Nichols years ago at NMMC. He was an excellent surgeon and very kind.
    Enjoyed working with him. My condolences to the family.

  3. I loved Dr. Nichols. He cared for my grandmother in 1991 when she had an abdominal aneurysm. He was an excellent physician. When my grandmother was hospitalized a year later for heart problems, Dr. Nichols visited her. He wasn’t her doctor at that time but made that effort because he was such a caring person. He will be missed.

  4. Dear Caren, Penny, Jonathan, Gabriel, Meryn and Molli. Please accept my heartfelt condolences on the passing of your husband, father and grandfather. Caren, Frank Albert Nichols, Jr. was your husband for 52 years, but he was my brother for just 10 days short of 70 years, and although we didn’t share the same father, we did share the same mother. Bud or Buddy as he was known to us, never cited us as half brother or sister (Jane Hadden is his sister) Bud always called us brother and sister. Pain runs deep, and the pain of loosing a brother is as sharp as loosing a husband, a father, or a grandfather. The hurt of being left out is also great. Peace be with you all and may the Lord of Creation comfort you in this time. Although we are apart, we grieve together.
    Let it be known to all, I love my brother Bud.
    Please note also that Frank Albert Nichols, Jr. (Buddy) was born in Brooklyn New York and his father Frank Albert Nichols was a casualty of World War II. Frank Jr. (Buddy) moved to Wyoming in 1948 when his mother Hildegarde C. Larson Nichols married John P. Richards Jr.


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