Nash carries her brother's memory on her back with a tattoo that bears his name, Michael Sean Ensley. He was fatally shot three months before he would have graduated from Reseda High.
"I raised her in a very rough neighborhood," said Margaret Ensley. "And I sent my son out to the Valley to go to school which, unfortunately, is where he lost his life. But Niecy went to school and went onto college. She just wanted more for herself."
Nash has carved out a successful comedy career. She is now enjoying her time showing another side of herself on "Dancing With the Stars."
"When I was 15 and saw my mother get shot, her boyfriend who shot her, was hiding in the house," said Nash. "After he shot my mom, he set the house on fire with me inside."
"Niecy was the last individual to crawl out of that burning house as I lay in the backyard suffering from my wounds," said Ensley. "I couldn't move. I couldn't do anything."
"So my mother was just holding on outside because she didn't know, if I was dead or alive," said Nash. "So I'm definitely a survivor."
Today, Margaret Ensley lives with her daughter, helping her raise her three children. When she was raising Nash, she always told her "be true to yourself."
"And you don't come this far to be shaken by a dance competition," said Nash. "You come this far to shake what you got, and leave your mark on the dance floor."
Nash will be performing the Rumba Monday night on "Dancing With the Stars" at 8 p.m. on ABC7.