Brodie's Story


On Wednesday, 08 May 2019, at the way-too-early age of 16, Brodie entered the gates of heaven as a result of complications from brain cancer that he battled with true courage, inspiration, humor and dignity since the summer of 2017.

Brodie was a loving son to his caring and devoted parents, Stoli and Katie Nikolai and the best big brother his three adoring younger sisters; Rylie (14), Brynlie (12) and Preslie (9) could ever imagined.

Brodie was predeceased by his paternal Grandma Hilda Nikolai and Uncle Timmy, whom welcomed him into heaven with immense joy and open hearts.

As the first addition to a loving and nomadic Air Force family, Brodie lived in numerous locations since his birth at Nellis AFB in Las Vegas, Nevada. For example, his next stop was Monterey, California where he captured the heart of his adoring “Aunt” Victoria Carns and was blessed with the birth of his first sister and best friend, Rylie Paige. Following his California stint, Brodie moved on to Anchorage, Alaska where he had several near-miss encounters with unruly moose while romping in his first taste of snow. In Germany, “Team Brodie” was completed with the arrival of his treasured sisters, Brynlie Katherine and Preslie Grace. Brodie also began his fluency in the German language, gained an attraction to Air Force values and learned the art of spraying his dad down with a high-pressure fire extinguisher as is the tradition after final flights in fighter aircraft.

Now full of schnitzel, pommes frittes (German “French fries”) and European culture, Brodie entered the world of Alabama filled with college football fanatics and southern “twang”. After surviving Montgomery, Brodie truly hit his stride in our Nation’s Capitol Region while living in Springfield, Virginia. He developed lasting friendships with Charles, Andrew and Joschka, while further refining his German language and soccer skills as a key player on his 3-time championship soccer team. He also discovered his passion for firearms and hunting with trips to Wisconsin and his introduction to the Nikolai Deer Hunting Camp experience. Post-Air Force life found Brodie in Onalaska, Wisconsin where he met another best friend and true wingman, Tommy Berns while continuing to excel in soccer and enjoy the Wisconsin outdoors.

After his cancer diagnosis, Brodie made a tenuous road trip out to Colorado with his dad and best wingman ever, AF Chief Master Sergeant Phil “Wolf Chief” Robinson before being rejoined with Mom and his sisters a week later as he continued his cancer battle while living with his family in Uncle Patrick and Aunt Ashley’s house along with his three young and admiring cousins; Brice, William and Joseph.

As horrendous as Brodie’s battle with cancer was, he beyond doubt thwarted its evil intent by touching, redefining, inspiring and changing so many lives during his nearly 2-year odyssey by bringing so many closer to his savior, Jesus Christ. The true testimony of the infinite love for Brodie and how he had such a redefining positive influence on so many was evidenced by the genesis of “TEAM BRODIE” that consisted of tens-of-thousands praying for him all over the globe; the many, many people who sent him cards, photos, packages, gifts, words of encouragement and inspiration; as well as all those who spent so much time and effort helping take care of his family during his roller coaster of a journey.

Brodie was truly a “one-in-a-billion” type of character. He was an avid sports and outdoor enthusiast and inherited his dad’s passion for the Green Bay Packers to the chagrin of his Denver Broncos-loving mother. He was an origami guru, an amazing sketch artist, avid video gamer, inspiring musical “beat boxer” and rapper extraordinaire, crack marksman with an itchy trigger finger, all-star soccer player, power tool enthusiast, humble humorist and just an all-around phenomenal Christian young man, son, brother, nephew, cousin, classmate, teammate and friend whose “kind soul” attracted the love and accolades of all.

Brodie was a dutiful son to his mom and dad and “best big brother ever” to his beloved sisters. He was also dedicated to his friends and cousins while demonstrating true compassion and kindness for all he met. He once revealed, “I feel people’s highest highs and lowest lows” - and his heart was incredibly big enough to accommodate and care for all – ready and willing at a moment’s notice, to drop everything to demonstrate the depths of God’s love.

"Godspeed my son, your spirit was truly unstoppable and you will be forever missed."