Account established for family of beloved Mount Shasta coach

Skye Kinkade
Mount Shasta's Nicholi Barnaby died unexpectedly on April 1. A fund has been established to help his family with funeral expenses. Pictured are Nick with his wife, Lori, and their children Kiara, Elijah, Lailah, Neeko, and Tanisha.

A father of five described as “a big man with an even bigger heart” died unexpectedly last week, and an account has been established to help his family with funeral expenses.

Nicholi Barnaby, age 40, was the defensive JV coach at Mount Shasta High School. He also volunteered with MSHS track and the Siskiyou Knights, said his wife, Lori.

“He was a giant of a person. He was a large man with a huge heart and a commitment to kids that goes beyond words,” said Michael Burns, who coached MSHS football with Nick over the past two seasons. “It’s hard to believe he’s gone.”

Burns described his friend as always positive and upbeat, with “a very genuine and honest presence.”

“He took a great deal of pride in his family,” Burns said. “Where I really saw him shine was in his passion and commitment to helping youth... He brought a calmness and solid foundation to the field that I haven’t seen in many coaches. When he talked, people listened. He was like a magnet, and he always had the perfect message.”

Burns said he saw Nick just a few days before he died in Ray’s Food Place with his family. Despite the recent amputation of his second leg due to complications of diabetes, Burns said Nick was eager to get out on the football field with two prosthetics in August.

“He was ready to go, and I was looking forward to it,” said Burns. “It won’t be the same without him.”

“(Nick) contributed a lot to athletes at Mt. Shasta High School,” said athletic director Steve Nesheim. “He was in charge of handing out medals to athletes at all our home meets over the last few years.”

Nick “was very thoughtful and observant of those around him,” said his brother-in-law, Bob Ingraham. “(He) was an awesome human being and was always giving to others despite his own challenges... Most importantly, he was good man with a good heart. A faithful and loving husband, and an awesome dad to his children: Tanisha, Kiara, Elijah, Nico and Lailah.

Tanisha, age 19, is a student at College of the Siskiyous. Elijah, 18, and Kiara, 15, are MSHS students. Neeko, age 11, is a Sisson student, and 8 year-old Lailah is a second grader at MSE.

“He leaves a big void, not just in his family, but also on the football field,” said Burns. “I will deeply miss his presence.”

A memorial service will be held for Nick this Friday, April 11 at 1 p.m. at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, 214 N. Adams Drive in Mount Shasta.

How to help

Donations to help cover funeral costs can be made at any Wells Fargo Bank to the Nicholi Barnaby Funeral Memorial Fund, or online at:

Any money left over after the funeral costs will go to assist Nick’s children.