Nile Ned Gobel
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Nile Ned Gobel
  • November 10, 1922 - December 18, 2017
  • Portland, Oregon

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Nile Ned Gobel was born in on the Santee Indian Reservation (later to be named Crofton), Nebraska, to parents Roy and Frances (Kollars) Gobel on November 10, 1922. He was one of eight siblings - he had six brothers and one sister. His family were farmers in Nebraska and as a very young man, Nile worked at the Crofton creamery and delivered chickens to customers on the weekend. He attended Crofton High School and was quite an athlete. He was involved in and excelled at many sports endeavors including boxing, baseball, wrestling, and his favorite of them all - football. In 1942, Nile met the love of his life, Elaine Klosner, at a dance in the neighboring town to Crofton, Lindy, NE. Their love blossomed exponentially and the two were married in Crofton on December 28th of that year.

Shortly after the two were married, Nile and Elaine started a family, eventually auctioning all they had in Nebraska, relocating with their first born and expecting their second child, to Forest Grove, Oregon to be with Elaine's family. Nile had been drafted into the US Army to support the WWII war effort and was stationed at Fort Lewis in Southwest Washington. With the end of the war, he rejoined his young family in Forest Grove. Nile first worked at a saw mill, later working at the family dime store. Together with his father-in-law Ben Klosner, Nile built several homes for his family.

Following his time working at the dime store, Nile went to work for the Oregonian Newspaper. This line of work meant that Nile and family moved to and lived in many places in Oregon including Southern Oregon and the Portland metropolitan area. Nile went on to serve 44 years at the Oregonian in management.

Nile had an impeccable work ethic - he only missed a half-day of work in all of his time at the Oregonian - and that was only due to a scheduled surgery.

Nile and Elaine were blessed with eight children - born in this order were Dianne, Lynnette, Kraid, Suzan, Daniel, Lori, Loni, and James.

It has been said that Nile was a devoted family man who would go above and beyond to help his family members in any way he could. He will be especially remembered for the love and devotion that he showed for his wife Elaine. Nile had a great love for Johnny Cash as well, and Nile, as the lyrics of the Johnny Cash song read, would "walk the line" for Elaine every single day.

Nile has been described by his family as a bit of a busy "bumble bee". He stayed very active throughout his life. He was kinetic - always moving and always doing something whether it was working on the house, out in the yard, or working in the garden.

He enjoyed creative pursuits and expressed himself through art. Similar to Norman Rockwell, Nile discovered painting later in life. Encouraged by his son James, an artist himself, Nile didn't start painting until he was in his 70's. He enjoyed painting in bright, vibrant, colors and depicted motion and energy in his work - an expression of Nile's own vibrancy and personal dynamism. He was prolific in his output of art and many of his family members proudly display his work in their homes.

The Christmas holiday was an extra special and important time of year at the Gobel household. Nile and Elaine would dress up as Santa and Mrs. Claus in outfits that Elaine hand crafted herself. They put on quite a holiday celebration for their children and grandchildren - complete with a wooden sleigh full of presents. Nile, mysteriously was never present any time Santa was visiting and the common excuse was that he was out buying 7-up at the time.

Nile loved spending time with his wife, children and family. Nile and his family shared a great love for college football and were all huge lifelong Notre Dame fans, watching every televised game and attending games in person. Nile would sing his children to sleep with the Notre Dame fight song. Currently, one of his great grandsons is attending Notre Dame.

Family always came first. Whether it was helping Elaine prepare the evening meal, special trips to the store for everyone's favorite candy bar or the whirl of the blender as Nile prepared home made eggnog for a special "bed-night" snack, Nile along with his wife, Elaine were a constant source of love and support.

Following Nile's retirement from the Oregonian, Nile and Elaine relocated to a warmer climate in Las Vegas, Nevada. The two lived in Vegas for 25 years. Even in retirement, Nile was counted among the work force. He worked as a skycap at the airport well into his 80s.

In January of 2010, Elaine passed away and Nile returned to Portland to live with his daughter Loni in SW Portland for the rest of his days. All agree Loni spoiled Nile terribly. Right up until his very last days, Nile continued to be very active. Last summer, at the age of 94, he was still mowing the lawn.

Nile is predeceased by his loving wife Elaine and parents Roy and Frances Gobel, his five brothers and one sister.

He survived by his brother Ned Gobel; daughters Dianne Meyer, Lynnette Godat, Suzan Avant, and Lori Gobel-Qualman and Loni Gobel; sons Kraid Gobel, Daniel Gobel and James Gobel; 27 grandchildren; and numerous great-grandchildren and great-great grandchildren.

A funeral service will be held in Skyline Memorial Gardens Funeral Home, Clatskanie Room, 4101 NW Skyline Blvd, Portland, OR, on Thursday, December 21, 2017, at 12:00 noon. Burial will follow in Skyline Memorial Gardens at 1pm.

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