Learn our story, from the beginning and into the future.
Ever since we opened our gates we have approached life (and death) differently. While some just see the end of a loved one’s life as a time for grief and mourning, we prefer to think of it as a time for reflection, appreciation and even celebration. This is evident in everything we do, from the way we conduct our services to the amenities we choose to offer. We are not just a funeral home. We are a close knit community dedicated to honoring, sharing and preserving the amazing and inspirational stories that are life.
In a nutshell? Experience, professionalism, compassion, and empathy.
We've learned a lot over many years. Like how to present options without overwhelming. And how to meet the needs of many caring parties. People come to us in difficult times, and we respond kindness, calmness and expertise. Our goal is to create a beautiful occasion and make you feel welcome, always. We spend our days planning with families. We stay up to date with industry developments. And we make hard times a little easier.
A Legacy of Caring
Our funeral home has been an integral part of the community since World War II, and it has always been our goal to care for the residents of the Columbia Basin with a community-minded, family-oriented approach. Bill Nicoles originally purchased the funeral home from LeLand Plots in the 30's. He added on to the building in order to have accommodations for a chapel. Mr. Nicoles served the Ephrata community throughout WWII and for many decades thereafter.
From 1988, the Precht family purchased the firm and the funeral home was staffed by Funeral Director Jim Irving, with his wife, Verna who provided the office support. They worked side-by-side, until Jim passed away in the mid 90's. Verna continued to put her energies into the business, and in 1992, she was joined by her daughter Susan. As a licensed funeral director and embalmer, Susan brought her youthful perspective, energy, and deep compassion into the firm – while continuing that tradition of caring begun by her parents.
Into the New Century
In 2005, Kevin Precht purchased his family's interest in the Funeral Home and continued to operate it while working to bring new offerings to families, such as video tributes, after-service receptions, and helping families prearrange funerals. In 2011, Susan stepped into semi-retirement, and owner/funeral director Kevin Precht serves the needs of the families in Ephrata, Soap Lake, Quincy, Moses Lake, Coulee City, the Columbia Basin and surrounding areas. “We consider it an honor to be allowed to assist those who turn to us for care. We are dedicated to professional service, and every family that comes to Nicoles receives the most attentive care possible.” In 2011, Kevin added the support of Bea White, and her husband Mike to continue the caring efforts that every family deserves. They work together to accomplish the family's needs during such a difficult time.
Who We Are
Meet our staff. Members of the local community make everything that happens possible.
Together, we make this place amazing.
Kevin is proud to be a third generation Funeral director, and funeral home owner. Prior to becoming a funeral director, he earned a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration, with a concentration in Finance from the University of Washington. He then pursued the completion of the course work involved in earning the Associate of Applied Science degree from Apahoe College, Mortuary Science program. He completed all course work in 2003, and obtained his Washington state licenses in funeral directing and embalming. In 2006, he purchased the Nicoles Funeral Home from his uncle.
Bea was raised in Buckley, Washington where she graduated from White River High School. She married her husband Mike the same year she graduated which is when they made the decision to move to Grant County in 1999. They have four children; Samantha, Devon, Haley, and Skylor who attend school in Soap Lake. Bea attained her Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration from Jones International University in June 2014. She is active in the community and is a member of the Ephrata Rotary Club. During the Sage-N-Sun festival, she is the club chair for the Youth Parade and also is on the committee for the Rim2Rim Tournament. Getting kids active and bringing quality of life to the community is important to her. She began working at Nicoles Funeral Home in July 2011. When she is not working, her time would be spent with her family, gardening, camping, swimming, or participating in community events.
Cemeterian and Funeral Assistant
Mike was raised in Ephrata and graduated from Smokiam Alternative High School. Mike married his wife Bea in 1999 and they had four kids; Samantha, Devon, Haley, and Skylor. He was employed in lawn maintenance for several years before settling down at Valley View Memorial Park in April 2008. In 2011, Mike began working at Nicoles Funeral Home to ensure families received the support they needed. He enjoys spending time with his family, fishing, camping, and barbequing.
Chad Gouge is the Funeral Director/Embalmer at Nicoles Funeral Home. Chad has more than 27 years of experience. Before joining Nicoles Funeral Home in 2012, he worked at several funeral homes in Texas, Alaska and Washington State. Chad is highly skilled in the art of embalming and cosmetology. He received his Associates Degree from Dallas Institute of Funeral Service in Dallas, Texas. Chad enjoys spending time camping, fishing in the great outdoors. Chad is always available to serve and help families address any of their concerns.
Pat O' Leary
Pat has spent his career helping and serving people as a pastor. He spent thirty years in Auburn Washington as a community builder in conjunction with the Mayor’s and the churches.
Pat states that his love for people is the cornerstone of his work. Pat married his wife Bobbie in 1975 in Moses Lake and has four children and four grandchildren. Pat and Bobbie enjoy the small town, family, a garden and reading. Pat feels privileged to work at Nicoles Funeral Home, serving families in this vital role.