Richard Allyn Rustad

richard rustad

August 2, 1948 ~ September 15, 2022

Born in: Fargo, ND
Resided in: Fargo, ND

Richard’s Mass of Christian Burial will be Viewable Below:

Richard’s Prayer Service will be Viewable Below:

Richard Allyn Rustad, age 74, of Fargo, passed away September 15th, 2022 at Sanford Hospital on Broadway surrounded by his loving family.

Richard was born August 2, 1948, at St. John’s Hospital in Fargo, ND to Arthur and Cecile (Devitt) Rustad. He attended St. Anthony of Padua School as a child and later graduated from Central High School in 1966.

Richard served in the U.S. Navy from 1967-1972 during the Vietnam War. He was an Airman aboard the USS Coral Sea, Fighter Squadron One Five One. He was tasked with the job of caring for a F-4B Phantom airplane, which he did with excellence, earning him the award for Plane Captain of the month, January 1970. Richard was very proud of his time in the Navy and serving his country. He never passed up an opportunity to visit with a veteran and share stories. His service took him all over the world to places like the Philippines, Korea, Australia, Hawaii, and California. Richard always said working on the flight deck was a “rush”.

Upon honorable discharge, Richard returned to Fargo and began working at the family business, Rustad’s Upholstery, with his father, grandfather, and grandmother. He married LaVonne (Carlson) Rustad on June 22, 1974, in Warwick, ND. They made their home on the corner of 9th Street and 15th Avenue, in Fargo, where they continue to live today. He also attended Dakota Business College after he was married.

In 1975, Richard took ownership of the upholstery shop. He was a master of his craft and a true artist. He upholstered with precision and care in every staple, stitch, and button. He liked to joke he was international after doing some work for the Harlem Globetrotters. After continuing the business for another 35 years, he unwantingly had to retire due to his health as he was no longer able to execute the level of work he expected of himself. He would say, “If I can’t do it right, I’m not doing it at all.” The shop always had the smell of spray adhesive, the sound of the air compressor for his staple gun, and either Judge Wapner or a soap opera at deafening levels. It was a gathering spot for friends and family to stop and see Rich. Laughing at his jokes, listening to his stories, a cup of coffee and a stale doughnut were all guarantees of a visit.

Richard had a love of baseball that started in his childhood and continued his entire life. He coached youth baseball prior to going on to coach his sons. In the early hours of summer, you would see a slew of bicycles on the front lawn of the house. The neighborhood boys would sit all over the living room floor patiently waiting for Coach Richie to finish his morning cigarette and coffee while reading the newspaper before they would gather up in the back of the van and head off to baseball practice. He would want you to know he coached those boys through countless wins and trophies.

Richard was a student of history an avid fan of Fargo Post 2 Legion Baseball, the Green Bay Packers, NDSU athletics, professional wrestling, crosswords, golfing (B.R.A.G. Champion 1981, 1991, 2019), and attending grandchildren’s activities.

He is survived by his wife LaVonne; his three children, Chelsa (Brian) Swaser, Fargo, ND, Nathaniel (Ericka) Rustad, Maple Valley, WA, Adam (Samira) Rustad, Bellingham, WA; 4 brothers and sisters, Irvin (Lynann) Rustad, Fargo, ND, Donna (Craig) Phillips, Moorhead, MN, Doris (Rick) Haraldson, Fargo, ND, and Patrick (Betty) Anderson, LaCentre, MN; 6 grandchildren, Zachary, Isaac, Tanner, Ryder, Skyla, and Austyn; 1 great grandchild, Declan; and several beloved nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to Fargo Post 2 Baseball or The National Cemetery of Fargo.

Thank you to Dr. Roxanne Newman, Dr. Gerald Gross, Roger Maris staff, and all of his compassionate nurses and doctors. We will be forever grateful for extending Richard’s life far beyond our expectations


Visitation - Monday: September 19, 2022 5:00 pm

Boulger Funeral Home and Celebration of Life Center
123 10th Street
Fargo, North Dakota 58103


Prayer Service - Monday: September 19, 2022 7:00 pm

Boulger Funeral Home and Celebration of Life Center
123 10th Street
Fargo, North Dakota 58103


Visitation - Tuesday: September 20, 2022 1:00 pm

Nativity Catholic Church, Fargo
1825 S 11th St.
Fargo , North Dakota 58103

(701) 232-2414

Funeral Mass - Tuesday: September 20, 2022 2:00 pm

Nativity Catholic Church, Fargo
1825 S 11th St.
Fargo , North Dakota 58103

(701) 232-2414

Burial: September 21, 2022 9:00 am

Fargo National Cemetery
8709 40th Ave N Fargo

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Memories Timeline


  1. LaVonne and family,
    We are so sorry to hear of Richards passing. We have lots of fun memories of our times in Bowdon. Sending our sympathy and many prayers. God Bless!
    Dave and Sheila

  2. LaVonne and family,
    We send our deepest sympathies to each of you. May your memories give you comfort during this difficult time.

  3. Our sincere sympathy on the lost of your dear husband, father, and grandfather.. God be with you now and in the days to come..

  4. I’m sorry to hear this Lavonne and family. You captured Richard’s life beautifully in his obituary. May strength fill your hearts with memories of him. ❤️ Pat Pobst

  5. Saw Rich at the ballpark through the years and he seemed to be at every game when family was involved, which, in the Rustad family included a lot of baseball games. He was a good guy and I will miss seeing him. Prayers to the whole Rustad family.

  6. Our sympathies, Lavonne and family. Prayers for comfort and strength as you and your family celebrate Richard’s life.
    Bonnie & Harold Holtz

  7. RIP shipmate, I never knew you but did serve together on the Coral Sea from 67-69 and I was a plane captain with VA-153.

  8. Adam and Family,
    “Death leaves a heartache no one can heal. Love leaves a memory no one can steal”.
    Sending lots of love and prayers to you and your family during this difficult time.

  9. To the Rustad Family:
    We have so many fond memories of Richard! Oh the stories and the good times…from Hockey to Baseball and Football and later in retirement…we are forever grateful to have had the honor to know him. God bless you all as you grieve his loss. You are all in our prayers…please accept our most sincere condolences.❤️

  10. My bike was on that lawn for several seasons during elementary school. Even though I didn’t really like sports, I played baseball to hang out with my friends. I would rise with the sun, eat a juicy peach, watch ‘Fraggle Rock’, grab my glove and hop on my bike. I always respected Mr. Rustad. He made me want to do a good job for the rest of the team. He went the extra mile for the kids. I have many vivid memories of those experiences, even though it was 30+ years ago. The sights, sounds, and smells. He was truly a character. My love and prayers are with you all.

  11. LaVonne, we were so sorry to hear about Richard’s passing. Thoughts and prayers are sent your way.
    Jan and Rich Thompson

  12. Always loved Rich ! Always with the jokes and wisecracks. Looked forward to seeing him at family gatherings.
    I remember once going with his family to visit uncle Leonard’s. On the way home we stopped at a DQ for ice cream . Rich asked if I wanted a banana split and I said no strawberries or pineapple please…chocolate only. Guess what he brought back….the whole works! H laughed as I just held the melting mess and tried not to spill it in the car.
    Am sure Rich will be hanging around during his funeral and whispering messages to all who will listen.

  13. I have very fond childhood memories of the Rustad’s. Whether it being classmates with Chelsa, or playing sports with Nate and Adam. Rich would always throw a wave from the yard as I rode my bike down 15th ave to Clara Barton with a baseball glove on the handle bars. Sending love and prayers to LaVonne, Chelsa, Nate, Adam, and the entire Rustad family.

  14. LaVonne & Family,
    I’m so saddened to read about the passing of Richard. My heart goes out to you all at this very difficult time in your lives. Thinking of you and your family.

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