Nanci Chladek

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Nanci Chladek
Female silhouette.png
Birth dateNovember 1979
FatherPete Chladek
MotherKarin Chladek

Nanci Chladek is the youngest child of Pete and Karin Chladek with an older half-sister, Crystal, and older full-brother Jon. Nanci was born November 1979. She is described as small and blonde, a flirt and party girl. She graduated from High School in Glen Ellyn, a suburb of Chicago, Illinois, in the spring of 1996.

Nanci had hopes of making the cheerleading team at Northern Michigan University, but that fell through. She roomed with Crystal as a freshman until her sister graduated in December 1996. She slept around a lot, including the hockey player Kip. Her father blindly blamed any and all problems she had on her sister Crystal.

In February 1997, Nanci had Kip kick her roommate Ruth out. Ruth went to the dorm's Resident Aassistant Brenda who asked for help from Crystal's old boyfriend Randy Clark. Randy threw Kip out of the room and told Nanci's parents the truth, but they believed her lies that he threatened her and pulled her from the school.DW47

Nanci moved in with Kip for a few months in the summer of 1997, before returning home with a black eye. In August 1997, just when Crystal happened to be visiting, she came home again bruised with Kip hot on her tail. Crystal defended herself and Kip was sent to jail.

Sometime after Karin started to divorce Pete in 1999/2000, Nanci moved out of the house. In April 2001, Nanci's latest boyfriend, Curt, beat her up for what money she had. She grabbed what she could and left town, driving from Chicago on a rumor that Crystal was working at Canyon Tours, allowing her to arrive just an hour before Al and Karin's wedding trip. The wedding trip and her personal growth during it are the main subjects of the book Canyon Fires .

She had done well enough in her first season as a swamper that getting a raft of her own in the next season was a distinct possibility.PE1

In October 2001, Kevin Haynes, a Canyon Tours employee, was her de-facto boyfriend.

Nanci is the lead character in the book Down by the Riverside, the story of how she turns her life around after Canyon Fires . She starts a trip rowing a gearboat and at the end of the trip is informed by Al that she is "a fully-qualified Canyon Tours boatman".DBR3

In February 2003 Nanci told Jennlynn Hoffman her experiences as a prostitute in Chicago, another girl's suicide, and her own escape. This caused Jennlynn to regret the positive view of the business she'd portrayed in the TV documentary The Fast world of Learjet Jenn.HOG1 Jennlynn introduced Nanci to Norma Franceour and Nanci took an interest in the founding of Hearts of Gold to rescue girls trapped in situations like she had been in. In February 2005 Norma offered her the job of house mother at the Hearts of Gold refuge house, but she turned it down because she was headed to seminary.HOG23

In August 2005 Nanci starts at Hickory Run Methodist Seminary where she shares a suite in a boarding house with Sarah Lackamp. Over the course of 3 semesters she helps Sarah develop independence from her parents. In May 2007 Nanci accepts an assignment as minister for 2 smalll Methodist churches in ColoradoHR24.

Nanci surprises the churches at Conestoga and Tyler when she is there to take the services on the Sunday after her interview on a Tuesday.CR4 The women of the churches are amazed that she has moved in to the parsonage without furniture or housewares, only a sleeping bag, foam pad, a couple of old pots and a few dishes.CR4

After just over a week Nanci runs into controversy when she takes in Amber Wallace, the fifteen year old daughter of the town drunk and effectively town whore.CR8 She settles the problem by telling her own story on her third Sunday.CR21 When Amber's mother is found deadCR22 Nanci becomes her legal guardian until she's eighteen.CR23

Nanci meets Gerald Pepper when she takes the funeral for his grandfather, Elmer Pepper.CR17 Gerald is the single parent to Leah despite still being legally married.CR7

Wes Boyd's comment

In a Note to Readers on the home page of Hickory Run Wes Boyd includes: "For a character who was first cast as a semi-villain and was something of a throwaway, Nanci and I have come a long, long way."