Due to health reasons, Neil Morris of Sequim stopped advocating in downtown Sequim. His wife said he hopes to return after physical therapy in the coming months. (Matthew Nash/Olympic Peninsula News Group)

Due to health reasons, Neil Morris of Sequim stopped advocating in downtown Sequim. His wife said he hopes to return after physical therapy in the coming months. (Matthew Nash/Olympic Peninsula News Group)

Sequim advocates take break for health, personal reasons

Morris, Nightingale hope to return soon

SEQUIM — Two advocates known for their appearances at street corners in downtown Sequim have recently paused their efforts for health-related and personal reasons.

Neil Morris, a 79-year-old Sequim resident, and Jim Nightingale, 73, of Carlsborg often could be seen at the intersection of Washington Street and Sequim Avenue.

Morris, who has lived in Sequim for 30 years, suffered a stroke at his home on Jan. 14, his wife Suzi said in a phone interview.

Morris spent a few hours every day at the corner holding Black Lives Matter and Human Rights Campaign signs after learning of the death of George Floyd on May 25 in Minnesota.

Suzi Morris said Neil will begin physical therapy next month, and he’ll “be out of commission for awhile.”

“We’re hoping for the best,” she said. “He would truly like to get back out there.

“He cannot drive at this point. If I took him, and he needed to come home, it just wouldn’t work for him, but hopefully after physical therapy.”

Suzi said Neil’s signs also served as support for their adopted son, who is biracial, and a grandson, who is transgender.

“Neil thanks those who supported him in the last year,” she said, adding they’ve been “amazed” with the response.

“It’s just amazing how many people have gone out of their way to thank him,” Suzi said.

“He’s not doing it for the thanks. It’s one small little voice he can put out to the world. It’s evidently meant a lot to an innumerable amount of people.”

Prior to retiring in 1990, Morris spent 26 years in Alaska owning and operating a telephone company and an electricity business with his brother Daryl.

Due to health reasons, Neil Morris of Sequim stopped advocating in downtown Sequim. His wife said he hopes to return after physical therapy in the coming months. (Matthew Nash/Olympic Peninsula News Group)

Due to health reasons, Neil Morris of Sequim stopped advocating in downtown Sequim. His wife said he hopes to return after physical therapy in the coming months. (Matthew Nash/Olympic Peninsula News Group)

Nightingale is usually across the street from Morris, holding a sign with biblical scripture, but a “perfect combination of things” led him to take a break, he said in a phone interview.

Those reasons included colder winter weather, the pandemic, the inability to speak well through his mask to pedestrians at a busy intersection, and his recent marriage.

Nightingale began standing in late July with messages of scripture — Acts 16:31 (So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household”) — following the lead of Jim Nichols of Sequim, who started holding signs on the Fourth of July.

“People respond to that when you show love,” Nightingale said. “There’s nothing greater than holding up the name of Jesus.”

Nightingale married Linda Dahl, also of Sequim, on Dec. 10 after about four months of dating.

“It was an answer to prayer,” he said. “It just happened. It went fast because we knew it was right. She knew it was right. It didn’t take long.”

This is Nightingale’s fourth marriage; he lost his first wife Katie to breast cancer and his third wife Pauline last February. The widower has 10 children and 20-plus grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

The last time Nightingale was in downtown Sequim with a sign was in November, but he’s planning to return sometime in the near future.

“I’m planning on it,” he said. “We’re moving all her stuff. We’re not spring chickens. She may join me out there. She’s very supportive of what I do.”

Nightingale served in the U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard before retiring as a general contractor.

________

Matthew Nash is a reporter with the Olympic Peninsula News Group, which is composed of Sound Publishing newspapers Peninsula Daily News, Sequim Gazette and Forks Forum. Reach him at [email protected].

Jim Nightingale of Carlsborg said he’s taken a break from holding scripture signs encouraging drivers due to cold weather, the pandemic and recently getting married. He plans to return to promoting his faith in downtown Sequim, but he’s unsure when he’ll do so. (Michael Dashiell/Olympic Peninsula News Group)

Jim Nightingale of Carlsborg said he’s taken a break from holding scripture signs encouraging drivers due to cold weather, the pandemic and recently getting married. He plans to return to promoting his faith in downtown Sequim, but he’s unsure when he’ll do so. (Michael Dashiell/Olympic Peninsula News Group)

More in News

Crying Lady Rock on Second Beach in Clallam County is part of a stamp set celebrating the Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act being signed into law Oct 23, 1972. The photograph was taken by Matt McIntosh. (Photo courtesy USPS)
USPS stamp set includes popular Clallam County landmark

Artwork marks marine sanctuary’s 50th anniversary

Clallam County considers rehousing allocations

Money would be for emergency housing

Port of Port Townsend to consider benches, rate hikes

Initial Jetty work slated for September

Lopez named principal at Greywolf Elementary

Schools eye Sept. 16 as date for stadium naming ceremony

Jefferson County to consider opioid settlement allocation

Peninsula entities to receive allocations from state lawsuit

Seattle hospital to refuse some patients due to capacity

Harborview Medical Center in Seattle will temporarily… Continue reading

PHOTO BY: Susan Doupé
CAPTION: Priya Jayadev is the new executive director for Volunteer Hospice of Clallam County.
New executive director for Volunteer Hospice of Clallam County

Volunteer Hospice of Clallam County has hired Supriya “Priya” Jayadev as its… Continue reading

Steve Mullensky/for Peninsula Daily News
The Port Townsend City Council seeks to sell the Cherry Street property that had been barged over from Canada  five years ago to become affordable housing.
Port Townsend aims to sell Cherry Street housing project

Stalled for years, affordable housing project all but adandoned

Layla Franson, 15, and Jackson, her 10-year-old Quarter Horse, are competing in 4H at the Jefferson County Fair this weekend. Like many counties across the state, Jefferson County has seen a decline in the numbers of youths enrolled in 4H after the COVID lockdown and is actively seeking to reboot its program. (Paula Hunt/Peninsula Daily News)
Jefferson County Fair back after two-year hiatus

4H looks for bounceback after restrictions eased

Most Read