Nancy Jane Ellis


Nancy Jane Ellis passed away peacefully on 3/19/2024 at Evergreen Hospice of Kirkland WA after an extended illness. She was born on 5/15/1956 in Abbeville SC to Dwight Dunn Ellis and Jane (Moore) Ellis. Nan had a love of music from a young age as she was raised in a music filled home. A 1974 graduate of Greenwood High School, Nan attended Converse College where she obtained her Bachelor of Music Performance (Piano) in 1978. To complete her musical studies, she moved to California where she attended USC, earning her Masters of Music Performance (Piano) as well as Doctor of Musical Arts Performance (Piano). Nans love of music and history led her to live and study abroad for periods during this time.

Nan began her music career at Presbyterian College where she enjoyed teaching and interacting with students as an Associate Professor of Music from l985-2002. In 2004, Nan was ready for her next adventure! With her interest in a healthy lifestyle and a desire to helps others in a different field, she moved to Seattle and began studying at Bastyr University to be a Naturopathic Doctor. After obtaining her ND, Nan enjoyed her new career in the healthcare field for several years at Dahlia Natural Health Clinic in Seattle. In addition, she remained at Bastyr where she worked in Student Services & Guest Services. Realizing her true passion was music, Nan resumed teaching piano to the surrounding community. She touched many lives sharing music with students of all ages.

Despite Nan's health challenges, she lived a very full life due to her persistence and tenaciousness. She will be missed by many.

Nan is survived by sister Dwane Ellis Bolen of Dacula, GA; Nieces and nephews Anna Bolen Abernathy of Buford GA, Taggart Bolen of Franklin TN, Austin Bolen of Dacula GA, Melanie Bolen of Flowery Branch GA, ; great nieces and nephews Tripp & Addison Bolen, Lilly, Garrett, Victor Abernathy, and Leo Bolen. Tributes of remembrance may be gifted to Fred Hutch Cancer Center or Cedar Park Church.

  • Beverly Blanton Duzik (Posted: April 02, 2024)
    I have wonderful memories of time spent with Nan at Converse College, two summers in Interlochen, MI, at the first Spoleto Festival in Charleston, and in Los Angeles for visits during her time at USC. In addition to her love of music, she embraced all the arts and diverse cultures and up until the end, Nan knew how to party! During her last year, we celebrated holidays via Zoom and Nan’s crazy costumes reflected her creativity and terrific sense of humor. I’m grateful to have visited her earlier this year in Seattle. She was proud to show me the beautiful Chapel at Bastyr and I’m happy her memorial service happened in a place she loved. Kudos to Dwane Bolen for being Nan’s support and advocate during her most difficult days and I offer appreciation as well to the folks at Bastyr who treated Nan with such kindness. Nan, I’ll miss you and you’re in my heart always!
  • Karunya (Posted: March 30, 2024)
    Ms. Nan, as we all affectionately called her was not just a piano teacher to our kids but was also our dear friend. We will always remember her with lot of respect and fondness. She enriched our lives with her humility, knowledge, kindness and laughter. May her soul rest in peace.
  • Susan Kindall (Posted: March 29, 2024)
    Nan was a beautiful soul. As a master teacher and performer, she poured her life into others through music. She was my dear friend and piano colleague of over 40 years. I thank God for her.
  • Nancy (Posted: March 29, 2024)
    Nancy was a beautiful soul, we miss her, rest in peace Nancy in Jesus arms
  • Leave a Comment