Richard Seybolt ’60

Richard Alan Seybolt '60Richard Alan Seybolt, of Duluth and Boynton Beach, Florida, died unexpectedly on May 19, 2015. Rick was born on October 4, 1942, in Columbus, Ohio, to Alan Upson Seybolt and Dorothea Hoover Seybolt. Shortly after his birth, his family relocated to Los Alamos, New Mexico, where his father worked during the war.

Rick spent his grade school years in Scotia and Schenectady, New York. He attended high school at the Williston Academy in Easthampton, Massachusetts (now known as the Williston Northampton School) where he lettered in soccer, basketball and baseball. He completed his undergraduate degree at Middlebury College, Middlebury, Vermont. He was a member of the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity. He obtained a master’s degree in Spain, and completed his PhD in Spanish at Indiana University.

While at IU, he fell in love with a beautiful Hoosier named Jane Wedding, who was studying for her master’s degree in English. They were married in Frankin, Indiana, on June 8, 1968.

Rick’s career started at Colgate University in Hamilton, New York, where he was an assistant professor of Spanish. His son Blake was born there in 1971. Rick then joined his brother Steve on the faculty of their alma mater, Williston. After two years and the birth of son Cameron, the family moved to Duluth in 1974. Rick taught Spanish language and literature at UMD for over 34 years. His primary area of expertise was 16th and 17th century literature, but he equally enjoyed teaching freshmen to speak the Spanish
language. He officially retired in 2008 and began spending winters in Boynton Beach, Florida, but he continued teaching classes at UMD periodically during fall semester. The day he died he spent the afternoon reading and taking notes in preparation for future teaching.

Rick was an active member of Glen Avon Presbyterian Church for many years. He also enjoyed his Wednesday “golf therapy group,” and doubles tennis. Rick and Jane were members of long-lasting bridge groups, including one that has met continuously for over 35 years.

He was known for his dry sense of humor, his devotion to family and friends, and his work ethic. According to Rick’s second grade report card, “Ricky’s success is due, not only to his native intelligence, but also to his well-rounded interests and many fine character traits. In any work Ricky can be depended on to do his best.”

Rick is survived and will be dearly missed by his wife of over 46 years, Jane Wedding Seybolt; his sons Blake (Raven) Seybolt of St. Louis Park and Cameron (Katie) Seybolt of Minnetonka; grandchildren Jack, Max, Eddie and Lauren; his brother Stephen (Phyllis) Seybolt of Gouldsboro Maine and Boynton Beach, Florida; his sister-in-law Mary Ann Wedding of Franklin, Indiana; and many dear friends from his childhood, working life, and retirement.

4 thoughts on “Richard Seybolt ’60”

  1. Rick was not only a classmate and a class officer, he was a good friend during his brief tenure while teaching at Williston. We both did some coaching, and we as bachelors went out to dinner together or with others from time to time. At age 25, I was introduced to my first martini by Rick – believe it or not!

    I remember one wintry Saturday when Rick told me to drop by the gym to see his basketball team perform. These were very young kids with little likelihood of a varsity letter one day. The opposing team was not much better. At the half, Rick’s team was losing by a score of about 8 to nothing. Things got better as the game progressed. I think the final score was something like 10 to 8. I do not remember who won.

    What I do know is that Rick himself was a winner. He was as honest and straight-forward as anyone I’ve known. His family should remember him and his legacy, for much that he was they have undoubtedly become. My sincerest best wishes to his wife and children; they were fortunate to have Rick in their lives. Bob Varnum

  2. Hello and best wishes to Professor Steve Seybolt, who taught me how to write.

    My condolences on the loss of your bother.

    With gratitude,
    Robert Lehmert ’71

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