Remembering Robert Seidel

Robert Seidel
Robert Seidel

Robert E. Seidel, retired professor of geography, passed away on Sunday, March 1, 2020 in Grand Forks from complications related to Acute Myeloid Leukemia.He was 85.

Bob was born in Fort Wayne, Ind., to John and Pauline Seidel. He graduated from Central High School in Fort Wayne in 1952; he earned a Bachelor’s of Geology in 1963 and a Master of Geography in 1966, both from Indiana University; and a Ph.D. in Geology from The University of North Dakota in 1986.

Bob also served in the military from 1957 to 1959 as an LS Radio Operator in Korea.

Bob married Jaymee Griffith in 1958 in Fort Wayne, IN and they adopted 2 children together. In 1995 he married Dixie Evans in Grand Forks, ND.

One of the premier experiences of his life was being part of a research team in the late 60s on a glacier in the Yukon studying climate. He enjoyed being able to survey the beauty of the earth around him.

Bob enjoyed teaching Geography for many years at UND, and that passion was never more evident than through his participation in the BRIDGE Program of Upward Bound through TRIO Programs at the University of North Dakota. He took a personal approach to every student he encountered. Bob had a wide-ranging enthusiasm about Film Noir and theater and music. He participated in numerous plays and musicals at the Fire Hall Theatre in Grand Forks, ND as an actor and also behind the scenes. He took special pride in being a principal lead in the independent film “Slip Away,” a Saarens Production

Bob was preceded in death by his parents, John and Pauline Seidel; his in-laws, Donald and Marlys Faehn; and brother-in-law, Earl Weinert.

Bob is survived by his wife, Dixie Evans; his son, Erik (Heidi Herczeg); his daughter, Amy (Christopher) Cass and their two children; and step-son, Joshua Evans and his two sons. Also surviving Bob are his former wife, Jaymee Colvin; his sister, Barbara Weinert and her two children and numerous extended family members including Dixie’s five siblings.

Bob’s family would like to thank Ngozi Nwakamma-Okoro, MD; the staff of Altru Cancer Center; Rene Fredstrom, MD; and the staff of Altru Hospital for their compassionate and loving care for Bob during his final illness and the many family members, friends and colleagues who have provided love and support.

Bob will be remembered at a Celebration of Life on Saturday, March 7, 2020 at the Gorecki Alumni Center on the UND campus from 2pm to 4pm. All are welcome to attend and celebrate. A memorial webpage has been created at