Nathaniel Reid Closen

Written by Muleskinner Staff

Nathaniel Reid Closen from Holden, Missouri, died on March 25.
A rosary will be will be held on Sunday, March 29 at 3:30 p.m. at Williams Funeral Chapel in Holden, Missouri with visitation to follow from 4 to 7 p.m. A Catholic Mass of Resurrection will be held on Monday, March 30, at 10:30 a.m. at Holden First United Methodist Church at 605 E 10th St.
Nathaniel was born on Sept. 2, 1996 in Anchorage, Alaska, as the first child to his adoring parents, Dave and Lisa Closen. They named him Nathaniel because it means “gift from God”. The son of a military pilot, Nathaniel spent his early childhood on the move with his family. Even as a young boy, Nathaniel was wise beyond his years. He had a natural curiosity about everything, and he loved to talk. Nathaniel would spend his waking hours in animated conversation and then, in the evenings, recall in vivid detail his entire day, with great enthusiasm.
In 1998 Nathaniel was blessed with a baby sister, Elena Grace. “Ellie” later became Nathaniel’s confidante, best friend, and soul mate. The Closen family settled in Holden, Missouri in 1998 where Dave served at Whiteman Air Force Base as a pilot in the Air Force Reserves. Nathaniel was also blessed with wonderful spiritual and academic teachers at Our Lady of the Presentation Catholic School, Holden Elementary School, and Holden High School. He enjoyed playing football, basketball, soccer, and baseball. Nathaniel loved anything adventurous: long boarding, snow skiing, waterskiing, and tubing. His taste for adventure led to many bruises, scrapes, and stories. As much as Nathaniel adored adventure, his true love was music. He was an accomplished musician, dedicating his time and talent to singing, composing, playing, and reviewing music. He also enjoyed sharing his music compositions online with others. He played the drums, piano, and guitar, but his greatest joy was performing with his sister.
Nathaniel’s friends describe him as passionate, caring and talented. He was a gentle soul with a kind and selfless nature. He had the ability to put a smile on everyone’s’ face, no matter how much silliness it took to get that smile. He spoke to and connected with people through his music and humor, and he brought joy to many by being a friend in so many thoughtful, caring ways.
Nathaniel was an excellent student. Through the United States Air Force, he received scholarships to attend Space Camp and two Teen Leadership Summits. He lettered in the Academic Bowl four years and was captain his junior and senior year. He was part of the T.A.R.G.E.T. program and robotics team. He earned several R.I.S.E. Awards, Top Two Awards and academic letters. He planned to major in pre-law at Iowa State University, his parents’ alma mater, and he had earned several academic scholarships. There was no greater fan of Iowa State sports than Nathaniel Closen; it was a dream come true for him to be a Cyclone.
Nathaniel would often share his kindness at Lloyds/Yoss Brothers’ grocery store, where he worked for over two years. He enjoyed his time at the store, especially being with his co-workers and customers.
Nathaniel is survived by Lisa, his mother; Dave, his father; Elena (Ellie), his sister; Don and Jean Schaefer, his maternal grandparents; and many aunts, uncles and cousins. He is preceded in death by his paternal grandparents, Dick and Pat Closen.
As successful a person as Nathaniel was from the outside, he was an even better young man on the inside. His love for his family and friends was unmatched, as was his love for God and his kind heart. While Nathaniel will be greatly missed and there are many tears here on earth, the arms of heaven are open wide for our adventurous, funny, sweet, kind, “gift from God”, Nathaniel.