Nancy and Kevin Niles: 2017 Palisades Fourth of July Parade Marshals

By Laurel Busby
Staff Writer

Longtime community volunteers Nancy and Kevin Niles have been honored as this year’s Fourth of July parade marshals.

The couple, who has been married for 42 years, have spent many years volunteering both separately and together in various local organizations, including the Rotary Club, the American Legion, Corpus Christi school and church, the Boy Scouts, the Pacific Palisades Woman’s Club, and the Palisades Americanism Parade Association (PAPA), which organizes the annual parade and fireworks festivities.

Despite their volunteering achievements, neither of the Niles expected the honor.

“I was completely surprised,” said Kevin, 66, who attended his first Palisades parade as a 10-year-old when his family bought a house on Edgar St.

Nancy and Kevin Niles will ride as parade marshals in this year’s Fourth of July parade. Photo: Lesly Hall Photography

Nancy and Kevin Niles will ride as parade marshals in this year’s Fourth of July parade. Photo: Lesly Hall Photography

“It was really a special treat that came out of the blue, which made it even nicer,” added Nancy, who grew up in both Ohio and the South Bay, but moved to the Palisades with Kevin two years after their 1975 marriage.

Each has been busy throughout their Palisades life. After earning a journalism degree from USC in 1975, Nancy worked for the City of Los Angeles, and before retiring in 2010, she spent 25 years as the community relations director for LAX. Meanwhile

Kevin worked for 31 years in the motor transport division of the L.A. Police Department before shifting gears and spending 15 years as a general contractor—a job from which he soon hopes to retire.

Along the way, the couple also raised two children, Kevin, who attended both Corpus Christi and Palisades High before moving on to USC, and Joanna, who also attended Corpus Christi and USC, but went to Marymount High School. Kevin Jr. died in a diving accident in 2003, while Joanna, and her husband, Charles Curtis, now live in the Palisades, where they are raising Joey, 8, and Violet, 5, who both attend Corpus Christi.

With their grandchildren at the school, the couple joined the Corpus Christi Grandparents Club, and they are one of several families who shepherded their children through the school, and now have grandchildren there.

“It’s a nice circle to see everyone grow up and have their own families,” Nancy said. “It’s very rewarding.”

Kevin also now has the chance to see his grandson enjoy being a Cub Scout, just as his son did, and he himself did. Kevin serves as a committee chair for Cub Scout Pack 223 and also works in various capacities with the Boy Scouts, including as the district representative for eagle projects.

“It’s a lifelong thing,” said Kevin, who became an eagle scout as a teen. “When my son was old enough, I got back in and I haven’t left.” 

Both Kevin and Nancy also participate together at PAPA and the Rotary Club, and they have been active in the American Legion. Kevin, a Vietnam War Army veteran, is a former commander of Post 283, and Nancy is a past president of the Auxiliary. They both rode together in the parade when he was commander.

Nancy, who also is a longtime active member of the Palisades Woman’s Club, which Kevin recently helped with some building repairs, said, “We’re pretty much always together. We’re one of those couples.

We like each other a lot.”

And they also like the Palisades a lot. “The Palisades is a very small community,”she noted. “Everyone tries to know each other and help each other. You are involved in so many things that overlap and intertwine. It’s a wonderful place to be involved.”

Kevin added, “It’s like paradise with the climate, the view, the ocean. I’ve been a lot of places in the world: Italy, Hawaii, Moscow, Australia, Alaska, China, and traveling with our grandkids in Europe. There’s no place like the Palisades.”

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