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Elwood Clifford Dietrich

Elwood Clifford Dietrich

Elwood Clifford Dietrich


- June 5, 2019

Elwood was born on October 10, 1938, at Mobridge, SD, and was baptized on the 6th of November at the local Lutheran county church.  Elwood spent his youth on a farm and ranch located about 18 miles east of McLaughlin, SD.  He attended grade school at the Butte Country school from 1944-1952.

In 1952, Elwood entered the 9th grade at McLaughlin High School.  While at high school, he participated in football, basketball, track, speech, and choir.  He graduated from high school in 1956.  Elwood was confirmed on June 28, 1953, at the Redeemer’s Lutheran Church in McLaughlin, SD.

In the fall of 1956, he attended the University of South Dakota in Vermillion.  In Vermillion, Elwood participated in Freshman football and track.  The following year, he transferred to Northern State College in Aberdeen, SD.  Elwood received his B.S. from Northern in 1960.  In 1968, he received his Master’s Degree in secondary school administration from the University of South Dakota.

Elwood married Angie Ochsner on May 31, 1958, at Trail City, SD.  After graduating from Northern State College, he took a job at Vivian, SD.  Elwood spent two years at the Vivian High School teaching math and social studies.  He also coached boys’ and girls’ basketball and boys’ track.  Dustan Elwood was born during this time at the hospital in Pierre, SD, on 12-10-1960.

In the fall of 1962, the family moved to Canton, SD.  Elwood spent 17 years at Canton High school teaching and coaching.  He taught math, social studies, and German.  He also coached football, boys’ basketball, boys’ track, and baseball.  Elwood guided his basketball teams to the state tournament in 1972 and 1979.  His Legion Baseball team won the State B tournament in 1966.  While at Canton, both Nathan Scott and Kyle Jay were born.  Both were born at Sioux Valley Hospital in Sioux Falls, SD; Nathan on 2-3-1964 and Kyle on 6-23-1967.

In 1979, Elwood moved to Wall, SD.  He spent one year at the Wall High School teaching math, German, and Government.  Elwood was also the head boys’ basketball and football coach.  The family was living in Rapid City at that time as they had moved there in the fall of 1978.  Dustan graduated from Rapid City Stevens in 1979.  Elwood and Angie were divorced in May of 1979.

Elwood then moved to Sturgis, SD.  Nathan and Kyle both moved with their father to Sturgis.  There, Elwood spent 21 years at the Sturgis High School.  He taught German, math, and social studies from 1980-1989.  During that period, Elwood also coached sophomore football, varsity boys’ basketball, and girls’ golf.  Elwood’s teams won the Black Hills Conference title twice and attended the state basketball tournaments in 1982-83 and 1988.  His golf team also won a conference championship.  Nathan graduated from Sturgis High school in 1982 and Kyle in 1986.

Elwood’s lone grandson, Calvin James Dietrich, was born on 09-09-2000, to Kyle and his then wife, Lynn Teresi.  CJ played football at Redondo Union High School and is graduating in June 2019, and will be attending college in the fall.  Elwood’s daughter-in-law, Viyada Dietrich, has been an integral part of Elwood’s life since Nathan’s marriage to her in 1997.  Viyada was a true daughter to him, and a much loved caretaker of Elwood during the last two years of his life.

In 1989, Elwood became the assistant principal at the high school.  He was the assistant principal for several years.  In 1995, Elwood was selected as the assistant principal of the year for the state of South Dakota.

Elwood became the Athletic/Activities director in March of 1996.  He remained as Athletic Director until his retirement in 2001.  In total, Elwood spent 41 years in Public Education.  Elwood was inducted into the South Dakota High School Coaches hall of Fame in the year 2000, and received the South Dakota High School Activities Association Distinguished Service Award in March of 2001.

Elwood loved to spend his spare time golfing with friends, working on genealogy, traveling, and keeping the clock at Sturgis High School basketball games.

Elwood Clifford Dietrich, 80, of Sturgis, passed away on the morning of June 2, 2019, in Spearfish, SD.

Visitation will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Friday, June 7, 2019, at Kinkade Funeral Chapel in Sturgis.

Funeral services will be at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 8, 2019, at First Presbyterian Church in Sturgis with Pastor Paul Henschen officiating.  Interment will follow at Bear Butte Cemetery.

A memorial has been established.

Condolences may be sent to the family at www.kinkadefunerals.com.



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