University Letter

UND's faculty and staff newsletter

Remembering Stacey Rygh

The University of North Dakota community is deeply saddened to learn of the death of Stacey Rygh, licensed clinical social worker at the University Counseling Center, on Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2022. She was 50.

Stacey Cae (Littlejohn) Rygh was born on Feb. 19, 1971, in Grafton, N.D., to Harvey and Eleanor Littlejohn. She grew up in St. Thomas, N.D., and moved to Grand Forks when she was 5 where she graduated from Red River High School in 1989.

Stacey attended the University of North Dakota where she met the love of her life, Timothy Paul Rygh. Tim and Stacey were united in marriage on May 29, 1993, in Grand Forks. The couple made their home in Grand Forks where they were blessed with three beautiful children: Brayden, Sophie, and Sadie, along with many cats.

Stacey graduated from the University of North Dakota with her bachelor’s and master’s in Social Work. Stacey loved caring for people at hospitals and schools throughout her career. Some of her favorite workplaces include Altru Hospital, Spectra Health, and the UND Counseling Center. She had a unique drive to go out of her way to help and serve people. She truly enjoyed getting to know people and wasn’t afraid to ask the tough questions.

Capturing life’s moments was Stacey’s side gig for many years. Regardless of where she was, she was always behind the camera blessing others with lasting memories. She had a gift when it came to photography and her work will be cherished for many years to come.

Faith was a very important part of Stacey’s life. She led by Jesus’ example of sacrificial love by always lending a listening ear, remaining nonjudgmental, and putting others’ needs before hers. She held onto the promise of Heaven and it gave her hope and comfort even in the hardest of times.

Above all, Stacey loved her family and spending quality time with them. She never passed up the opportunity to travel, engage in a guessing game, stop and browse in little shops, or go out to dinner with family or friends. She offered tremendous support to her children and she was their biggest fan.

Stacey’s memory will be cherished forever by all those who love and miss her so much.

Stacey is survived by her son, Brayden (Taylor) Rygh; daughter Sophie Rygh; daughter Sadie Rygh; mother Eleanor Schnell; father-in-law, Paul Rygh; mother-in-law, Judy Rygh; sister, Sharyn (Roger) Krsnak; sister, Susan (Chuck) Ault; sister, Wanda (John) Schmisek; sister Lisa (Mark) Allen; grandchildren Leonelle and Shepherd; as well as several nieces and nephews. Stacey was preceded in death by her husband, Tim, and her father Harvey Littlejohn.

Memorial Service will be at 4:30 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 24, 2022, at Hope Evangelical Covenant Church, Grand Forks. The service will be available via livestream on the church website. Amundson Funeral Home is assisting with the service arrangements.