Nicholas Samuel Lake was born on August 11, 1997. He attended SELF in Valparaiso and was a proud graduate in 2018. Nicky’s family will be forever grateful to Patty Beedle, Denise Sasser, Jill Hunt, his many paraprofessionals, and his Crystal.
As we all know, there were things that Nicky couldn’t do. He couldn’t walk. He couldn’t talk and hold conversations with people. He couldn’t do many things other people take for granted every day. When some people looked at Nicky that’s what they saw – the things he couldn’t do. But that’s not what his family and friends saw, and that’s not who he was. He could smile. He could laugh. He could feel happiness. He could give and receive love. Nicky showed his love without ever saying a word (unless you were “Da” because he told Da everything). 
Nicky taught his family and friends so much. Nick inspired others to be happy, to try harder, to never give up. Nick worked hard to overcome challenges, and he inspired others to do the same. He taught us that every day is a gift and to find joy in the simple things. For Nicky, joy was his movies, his frog Stinky, eggnog, and Teletubbies. He taught us about perseverance and inner strength, as he continued to fight battles in health and limitations that would crush many of us. He showed us what it is to be strong because Nick kept on going, kept trying, day after day, long after others would have given up.  Nick gave us the gift of insight and showed us things we might otherwise have missed.  He gave us the gift of perspective. He reminded us to be grateful for what we have and to savor the beautiful moments we have every day, because ultimately life is fragile and someday all too soon, we must say goodbye.
Nicky taught us about kindness and patience, because it took a lot of love, patience, and dedication to care for his needs day after day. He taught us to nurture someone so completely, and to do it for so long with a dedication and depth of love that is hard to comprehend for those who haven’t done it. Nick taught us what it was to truly love without condition---to love even when it hurts, even when it’s not easy; because you simply couldn’t help but love Nick. Nick taught us how to love without words, without limits, and without reasons.
Nicky passed away at home in the early morning hours on Tuesday, November 29th. Nicky is survived by his mother, Karen; his older brothers: Rick (Corrina) and Randy (Heidi); his older sisters: Rebecca (Chad) and Rachel; his nephew, Colton; his niece, Harper; and his godmother, Sharon Coulson. Nicky was preceded in death by his father, Richard Lake, and his younger sister, Tiffany.
Visitation will be Monday, December 5, 2022, from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. at Kosanke Funeral Home 309 S. Main St., Kouts (New Location) with a Funeral Service beginning at 12:00 p.m.  Nicky was loved by all who met him. Nicky was a joy to interact with as he smiled, laughed, and brought happiness to everyone who knew him. In lieu of flowers, the family asks for donations that will be used to purchase a headstone for Nicky.


Having this happen in my family, my heart breaks for yours. May God's grace touch each and everyone of you. He's in God's care now. He is perfect in God's eyes. Blessings on all of you.  -James Norton 

Your son was one of the reasons I stayed at SELF and continued subbing he had a smile the would brighten any room and make any day better I was like aww when Jill sent me the Facebook message this morning. After I read the post I prayed for you guys and I know he is definitely in heaven with Jesus and is now one of his Special angels.  -Lee Anne Bettenhausen 

So sorry for your loss.  -Ron Witkowski 

Nicky was just an angel. His smile lit up the room and I enjoyed his singing while watching movies. He had a contagious laugh when we blew bubbles. Blow those bubbles in heaven Nicky, it was a pleasure to care for you.  -Bri Shear 

I did my vocational teaching when I was a Senior at VHS at Self in 2004. I worked in Nicky’s kindergarten class and got the upmost privilege working the most with Nicky! The obituary speaks only the truth at how much impact your son had on anyone that met him! He was a breath of fresh air everyday I would be working with him! My heart broke when I read of his passing and I hope that you all find your peace knowing how wonderfully amazing Nicky was. Rest in Peace, Nicky - Ashlee Fogle 

Rest in peace, Nicky. You had a great smile.  -Bill 

My heart shattered when I was told the news by a former employer that Nicky had passed away. I met Nicky when I was his caregiver ,he brought such joy to my life. He always had a smile that would brighten any room and any heart , he loved everyone the time I spent with him and his family will forever be in my heart and will be memories I will never forget. My heart goes out to the family. Nicky will be forever missed by many. Rest well Angel!  -Sharyl Schmidt 

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