December 15 1941 – March 17, 2020
On St. Patrick’s Day, March 17, 2020; the Lord called home His daughter Nancy Jane Webster Ernaut. Later that next day, we are sure the Lord realized he had his hands full. In her honor the State of Utah marked her passing with an earthquake. The family would like to thank Utahns for that gracious gesture.
Nancy was born in Auburn, CA on December 15, 1941 to Ralph and Ada Webster. She grew up and attended schools in Northern California, Reno, Nevada, and Elko Nevada. Nancy attended Elko High School and graduated later from Bishop Manogue High School in Reno in 1958.
In 1961, she met Robert Ernaut. The next year the two would be married and welcome the birth of their first child, Stephen. In 1964, they gave Stephen a little brother, Peter. The family resided in Elko, Nevada. They went into business and purchased the Arctic Circle drive-in, a fast-food franchise, in Elko. In 1967 opportunity smiled again. They sold the Arctic Circle in Elko. Nancy, Robert, and the boys would move to Reno, purchase a house off of Virginia Lake, and expand their Arctic Circle franchises to five, four in the Reno area and one in Brookings, SD.
Nancy and Robert separated in 1969 and would later divorce. Nancy was a single mother trying to make ends meet with two small children. She worked at The Ponderosa Hotel Casino and at Park Lane Mall for Roos Atkins.
In 1970 she moved back to Elko with the boys and was managing Lillian’s Dress Shop where she had worked in high school. She would go on to purchase her own clothing store, Nanci’s, after leaving Lillian’s. Later she would come full circle and purchase Lillian’s. She sold Lillian’s and briefly had a small clothing store, but that would be the last time she owned a business herself.
Nancy had more lives than a cat when it came to her career. She was F&I for Dewey Chevrolet. She also was the Office Mgr. for Geowest Services, then later for Old Soldier Minerals. She sold manufactured homes for Sundance Homes, as well as holding many other jobs in Elko. She worked at the P.U.C. in Elko before retiring.
Nancy’s passion, though, was politics, politics, politics! She was Elko County Republican Chairman and State Republican Party Chairman. She worked on US Senator Paul Laxalt’s campaign, Congresswoman Barbara Vucanovich’s, US Senator John Ensign’s, and US Senator Dean Heller’s campaigns. She also worked on Gov. Kenny Guinn and Gov. Brian Sandoval’s successful campaigns. Nancy was a dyed in the wool Republican.
She was preceded in death by both of her parents, Ralph and Ada Webster.
Nancy is survived by sons, Stephen, and Peter & Wendy Ernaut family, grandchildren Bobby, Henry, PJ, and Isabella Ernaut; all of Reno, NV.
She is also survived by her older sister, Carol Lee Sewell, of Boulder, MT, nephew Darrel & Deb Sewell family of Sheridan, MT, niece Damia and David Deacon family of Butte, MT, and nephew Randy and Jessica Sewell family of Eugene OR.
Services will be held at a later date because of current Covid-19 restrictions for gathering, and will be conducted under the direction of Burns Funeral Home and St. Joseph’s Catholic Church.
Our family respectfully asks our friends to please consider a contribution to “Keep Memory Alive” in Nancy’s name at www.keepmemoryalive.org.
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