Mary Cecelia Tysdal


November 7, 1909 - April 29, 2014


Mary Cecelia (Moran) Tysdal, 104, died Tuesday, April 29, 2014 at Avera Queen of Peace Hospital, Mitchell, SD with her family at her side. Funeral services will be 1:30 pm Saturday, May 3 at Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Mitchell.  Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery.  Visitation will be from 5-7:00 pm Friday with a scripture service at 7:00 pm at the Bittner Funeral Chapel.

She was born November 7, 1909, the 10th of 11 children to Matthew and Mary Jane Moran in Woonsocket, SD. She attended school in Woonsocket and graduated from high school in 1928. She was highly involved in academic and extra-curricular activities. The Woonsocket High Life High School Newspaper stated she was active in basketball ,track, glee club, chorus, board of control member, staff of tek-cos-NOOW, staff of Highlife, four high school plays, orchestra, band, short hand contest, declamation and secretary of the class. Editorial comment was “A popular girl in classroom and hall; in vim and pep she surpasses them all”.

After working as a legal assistant for a prominent Woonsocket attorney for a year, she attended Notre Dame Academy in Mitchell where she pursued a family tradition in the teaching profession. She began her teaching career in a Sanborn county country school and subsequently joined her brother John in McLaughlin, SD where she taught Native American children.

During World War II (1944) she traveled to Washington D.C. to marry her long time sweetheart Lloyd Tysdal of Artesian, SD. She worked as a telephone operator and railroad ticket clerk while her husband was serving his country. They later returned to South Dakota to begin their married life in Mitchell. She then devoted her life to her family for the next two decades.

She then returned to school at Dakota Wesleyan University and Northern State College to renew her teaching certificate. She taught second grade at Holy Spirit Catholic School until her retirement many years later.

In retirement, she enjoyed traveling to see her children and grandchildren. She remained active in her community and church, expanding her social network to include friends of all ages. She often commented that her strong faith, positive attitude and resiliency contributed to her longevity. Even after the loss of her husband, she continued living independently driving, maintaining her own residence and living a full and productive life until her passing.

She was a joy to be around, always with a kind word for others, a smile on her face and a skip in her gait. She was proud of her Irish heritage and was an avid Twins fan. At age 103 she was honored as a special guest by the Twins organization and met her favorite player, Joe Mauer on the field in Minneapolis. She has been recognized by both the President and the Governor for achieving an exemplary life for all to emulate.

Those left to share her memory include her three children: James (Mary) Tysdal, Appleton, WI; Mary Jo (Tyz) Thurston, Rapid City, SD; William (Jan) Tysdal, Rapid City, SD. Grandchildren: Erikka, Sadie, Maia, Emily, Elli, Ramsey, Derrick and Elizabeth; Six Great Grandchildren, numerous nieces and nephews and many other special people. She was preceded in death by her husband Lloyd Tysdal and her son, Morris Tysdal.

The family is requesting a memorial to Holy Spirit School in lieu of flowers.





Friday, May 2, 2014
5:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Bittner Funeral Chapel
Scripture Service ~ 7:00 PM
805 West Havens
Mitchell, South Dakota


Saturday, May 3, 2014
1:30 PM
Holy Spirit Catholic Church
1401 West Cedar Avenue
Mitchell, South Dakota


Calvary Cemetery
Mitchell, South Dakota

Posted by Carol Hildebrand Elkins on May 3, 2014
Dear Tysdal Family, our family mourns your loss with you. Mary was our mom Janice Hildebrand's long-time and beloved bridge player and coffee partner. Mom loved Mary and spoke of her often. Many Saturday afternoons in Mitchell, one of us visiting kids would accompany mom to meet Mary at Coburn's for a cup of coffee and a few hours of chatter. Mary always did have a smile, a good word and a skip to her gait. We love Mary for all the joy that she brought to Mom and for the special teacher she was to my younger siblings. God bless Mary and all of you.
Posted by Ann Hilton on April 30, 2014
Mary, you will be so missed! You had such a positive look on life. When I reflect, I remember what a kind person you were. I never heard you say anything negative about anyone. I will miss the spring in your step and that wonderful laugh! Most of all was your devotion to family. I love you Mary! I hope you are dancing the jig in Heaven!
Posted by Terry Quinn on April 30, 2014
I have not had the pleasure of knowing Mary (Mrs Tysdal to me ) for very long but in that short time I found her to be the most pleasant, warm and generous lady I have met. Yes, she will be missed but she left for all her wonderful friends and family her great assets. My thoughts and prayers are with Tyz, Bill, Jim and the rest of the family.
Posted by Mike and Jo Oster on April 29, 2014
One of the sweetest, most sincere and elegant women I have ever known. She was always a highlight of the family get together's because of her constant smile and contagious laugh. She will be missed but always remembered. We feel fortunate to have had her in our lives. Our prayers are with the entire family to find the joy in the memories.
Posted by Tom and Lori Oster on April 29, 2014
We will always remember Mary as a very "classy" lady. Our thoughts and prayers to the entire Family.
Posted by Jane and Orie Voight on April 29, 2014
Sending our thoughts and prayers to all. Mary will indeed be missed and remembered. Always a joy to be around. Now I can just picture Helen at the piano with Mary and Clare doing their Irish jig.
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