Bruce David Nordwall: a man of strength, courage and loyalty, gifted pilot and aviation pioneer, talented journalist, loving husband, devoted father, beloved FarFar, and a faithful friend.
The first son of schoolteacher Lois Maxine Ringer and forester David Sigurd Nordwall, Bruce Nordwall graduated Englewood Highschool, with a Congressional appointment to the US Naval Academy at Annapolis. After graduation, he married his high school classmate Joceile Milligan and pursued a career in Naval Aviation. Together they raised three sons, Eric David, Paul Martin and Grant Stuart amidst the challenges of life as a Navy family. They received new assignments every two years ending up in Alexandria, Virginia. Bruce piloted the carrier-based S-4 submarine-chaser and pioneered its advancements in jet-propulsion throughout his 26-year career in the Navy. After retiring as a Navy Captain, he was recruited by McGraw-Hill’s Aviation Week magazine as the Avionics Editor, using his extensive experience and keen passion to review and report on advancements in navigation, weaponry, and aircraft development with multi-national contributors.
Ever the avid travelers, Bruce and Joceile together traversed every continent in the world. Among the adventurous places they visited together were Antarctica, Cuba, India, New Zealand and many countries in Europe. The Nordwalls were eager students of the cultures they visited, learning new languages, participating in unique cultural activities, and enjoying authentic local cuisine. They always brought back many pictures and stories to share with their family.
Bruce and Jociele were invested members of their faith community, serving together in several Methodist churches for over 25 years. Bruce was a proud member of the Englewood Lions Club, in Colorado, and firmly believed that a life well-lived must include dedicated service to the community.
Though the Nordwall’s lived a full and beautiful life, they were not untouched by grief. Bruce and Joceile lost their son Paul in a car accident in 1981. Their son Eric passed from an aneurysm in 2009. Through these losses they were held fast to each other, their families, friends and faith.
Upon the death of Joceile's parents Dr. Gatewood and Maxine Milligan in a devastating house fire in 2004, Joceile and Bruce moved from their home of 20 years in Alexandria, VA to rebuild and reside in the Milligan estate in Englewood Colorado. Bruce lost his beloved wife Joceile to brain cancer in 2016.
With declining health, Bruce moved to California in February 2020 to be closer to his youngest son Grant and his grandchildren. Tragically, Grant died of a heart attack in May 2020 while surfing with his children. Grant’s wife Camille relocated to live next door to Bruce and to provide additional care. Bruce enjoyed being close to family, walks along the bluffs overlooking the ocean, ping pong, and tennis. Bruce passed away in his home on June 30th, 2021.
Bruce is survived by his brother Paul, Loveland, CO; sister-in-law Jonnie Dilsaver, Brighton, CO; daughters-in-law Smita of Alexandria, VA and Camille of Arroyo Grande, CA and his 7 grandchildren Jubilee, Josiah, Naomi, Chloe, Micah, Nathan, and Charlie.
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