Nicholas Jose “Nick” Goirigolzarri, 25, passed away Friday, Nov. 29, after a battle with acute myeloid leukemia.
Nick was born Feb. 26, 1988, in Bend. Roseburg was where he called home and spent the majority of his first 18 years of life.
He attended Roseburg High School and was involved in sports, leadership, and multiple clubs. He graduated in 2006 in the top 10 percent of his class. His dream of attending the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs was realized with an early acceptance, success throughout his four years at the academy, officer commissioning, and graduation in 2010. His love of his high school football days developed into a love of rugby at the United States Air Force Academy, where he played for the USAFA rugby team. With his competitive spirit, athleticism, and disciplined physical preparation, he was selected each year for the United States Air Force National rugby team and their tournaments around the United States.
In his short 25 years, his gifts of humor, quick wit, loyalty, compassion, work ethic, athletic ability, determination, and love of life created a tremendous circle of friends and “Nick” fans. His charismatic smile, spontaneous laugh, and high energy brought such life to any family gathering, rugby competition, fun with his friends and coworkers at Schriever Air Force base in Colorado Springs, where he served. As a first lieutenant, he applied his many gifts to his military career. He quickly moved from satellite operations to executive officer to satellite evaluator.
He was the organizer and a participant of base celebrations, community service, and any athletic competition he could be involved in. His life was cut short while he was working on his masters and captain promotion. He had hopes of being stationed in Washington D.C., working with satellites in his acquisition officer role, and dreams of a family and children someday.
Nick loved his family. Home was where he drew strength and the greatest of support. He embraced life with his love of athletics, rugby, fantasy football, travel, cooking, hunting, fishing, and updating the “investment” house that he had so proudly purchased.
Nick is survived by his father, Javier; mother, Karen; brothers, Ben and Alex; grandmother, Gerri Lum; “Amama,” Luisa Goirigolzarri; as well as uncles, aunts and cousins.
A memorial Service will be held on Saturday, Dec. 14, at the USAF Academy Chapel, Cadet Chapel at noon. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Alzheimer’s Disease Research Foundation, the American Leukemia Foundation Inc., or to the Nicholas Goirigolzarri Roseburg High School Scholarship Fund at 400 W. Harvard Ave., Roseburg, OR 97470.