Dale Eldon Shjegstad was born in Sioux Falls, South Dakota in 1948, the second of five children. He grew up on the Shjegstad family farm near Sherman, SD, the family homestead since 1882. He graduated from Dell Rapids High School in 1966, was an active member of the National Honor Society, Dell Rapids Quarriers football team, and marching band. He went on to complete 2 years of engineering studies at South Dakota School of Mines & Technology on a full football scholarship where he played defensive tackle for the Hardrockers. He completed his BS degree in Agricultural Engineering in 1971 at South Dakota State University. He obtained his Professional Engineer’s license in 1976 and went on to pursue a career as an engineer and general contractor.
Dale was an avid photographer, filling boxes and boxes with film canisters, 35mm slides, photo prints, and more recently, filling digital memory card after memory card with his unique view of the world. His photos spanned a wide range of interests, from landscapes and scenery to family and friends. He was also a talented woodworker and carpenter who donated thousands of hours of his time to support missions such as Habitat for Humanity. He completed build missions across Guam and the Pacific, including a special project in the Philippines in 1999, where he had the honor to meet President Jimmy Carter on a build site.
Dale had a lifelong spirit of adventure. He moved to Guam with his wife and children in 1988 and established his own general contracting business. He was the crew chief for a quad bike race running the length of the Baja peninsula, a jetboat race running the rivers of New Zealand, and multiple trophy truck races in Yigo, Guam. He travelled and took photographs around Asia and the Pacific, across the US Mainland, and fulfilled a lifelong dream to tour Ireland and Scotland this summer, visiting castles, historic ruins, breweries, and distilleries.
Dale was a loving husband to Diane and a wonderful father to Erik, Sonia, and Jon. He will be remembered as someone who always had quiet words of wisdom, wit, or humor to fit any situation, and who would do anything to help a family member or friend in need. He will be dearly missed by many. Condolences may be left at Kahler Funeral Home.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Clarence and DeElda Shjegstad, and by his sister, Charlene Adams.
Those left to cherish his memory are his wife of 42 years, Diane; his children Erik Shjegstad of Aloha, OR; Sonia Shjegstad of Lafayette, CO and her son Connor Shjegstad; and Jon Shjegstad of Honolulu, HI; his brother Wayne (Dianne) Shjegstad of Sioux Falls, SD, and sisters Cheryl (Paul) Wildermuth; and Diane (Tim) Wilke, both of Dell Rapids, SD; Brother-in-Law Mitch Adams of Dell Rapids, SD; and his many nieces and nephews and extended family members and friends.
A memorial service for Dale will be held in Guam on Friday, November 20, 2015, followed by private cremation. A memorial service for Dale will follow in Dell Rapids, SD and is pending at this time.