After a long and ferocious last battle, Ettore “Nick” DiCandia, USMC Retired, 71, has gone to be with Our Father in Heaven, passing on Friday, July 19, 2019.
A visitation will be held at Brooks Funeral Home (201 Professional Circle, Morehead City, NC) from 4:00 – 6:00 on Sunday July 21. **Following the visitation on Sunday evening, the family will hold a Celebration of Life at their home, 2603 W. Forest Dr. Newport, NC 28570, (252)773-2701 with any questions. Funeral services will take place at noon on Monday, July 22 at Annunciation Catholic Church (246 E. Main St., Havelock, NC 28572). Committal will take place at 2:00 pm on July 23 at Coastal Carolina Veteran Cemetery in Jacksonville, NC.
Nick is survived by his beloved wife of 49 years, Gloria (Mamon), as well as their daughter Gloria DiCandia (Steve Shaver) and granddaughter Sydney Alexander (Danny), son Nicky DiCandia (Pam) and granddaughter Lily, as well as his siblings Maria Lindberg (Frank), Josephine Timblin, Matteo DiCandia II (Nicola), Alfred DiCandia, Anna Morris (John), Tony DiCandia (Gladys), sister-in-law Dols Abad, and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, Matteo DiCandia and Josephine (D’Alesio).
Nick was born in 1948 in Glen Ridge, NJ. After graduating from high school, he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps. He served in the Marines for 30 years, eventually achieving the highest enlisted rank as E-9 Master Gunnery Sargent. Among his multiple honors, he was awarded the Marine Corps Aviation Association’s Fixed-Wing Air Crewman of the year in 1994. He served all over the world, including 2 tours in Vietnam (where he met Gloria, who was serving in the battlefields as a medical technician with the Philippine Medical Team), and combat missions in Grenada and Operation Desert Storm. As a flight engineer with VMGR 252, Nick became one of the Marines’ foremost experts on the mighty C-130 Hercules aircraft. Known as “Top D”, he was a devoted mentor and leader to many Marines throughout his years of service.
After retiring from the Marines, Nick was immediately hired by Lockheed Martin, eventually became the longest serving C-130 aircraft test flight engineer at Lockheed Martin Aeronautics. He was a recipient of the NOVA Award, the highest honor bestowed by Lockheed, reserved for the company’s brightest stars. Nick again traveled the world, training flyers from Japan, to England, to Saudi Arabia how to use and maintain these giant airplanes.
Throughout his storied career, despite being called to all corners of the world, Nick remained grounded in Newport, North Carolina, a devoted family man. He coached Gloria & Nicky’s little league team. He was a member of the local Moose Lodge 2194, as well as the Newport VFW. He was a volunteer EMT for the Newport Fire Department. One of his favorite events each year was working with some of his closest friends to compete in the annual Newport Pig Pickin’ competition.
Nick’s love for life, passion for excellence, and larger-than-life personality impacted countless lives, all of whom are better for having known him and all will carry happy memories of Nick forever.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to Annunciation Catholic Church, 246 E Main St, Havelock, NC, 28532, phone # 252-447-2112.