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Orella "Pat" Woods

September 24, 1924 - August 26, 2017

Visitation - Wednesday

August 30, 2017
5:00pm - 7:00pm with a prayer service at 7:00pm

Our Savior's Lutheran Church, Hillsboro, ND

Memorial Service - Thursday

August 31, 2017
- 1:00pm

Our Savior's Lutheran Church, Hillsboro, ND


Wildeman-Boulger Funeral Home, Hillsboro

Orella "Pat" Woods

September 24, 1924 - August 26, 2017


Pat passed away on August 26, 2017 at the Hillsboro Medical Center Nursing Home at the age of 92, surrounded by her loving family.

Orella “Pat” Nysveen was born on September 24, 1924, the daughter of Henry and Mina (Waslien) Nysveen, in Hillsboro over the present drug store. She attended country school her first eight years in Norway Township. She graduated from Hillsboro High School in 1942. She graduated from Mayville State University with a B.S. degree in Elementary Education and Music.

Pat taught 32 years in Norway Township Country Schools, Forest River, Finley, Fargo, Hettinger and Hillsboro – all in North Dakota. While teaching in Fargo she became a charter member of the North Dakota Music Educators Association. She was honored at their 40th Anniversary in 1987, by being inducted into the NDMEA Hall of Fame with the other 22 charter members. The plaque hangs in the State Capital in Bismarck.
She studied violin for 10 years with Ralph Matesby at UND which gave her the opportunity to play with the Fargo-Moorhead Symphony while teaching in Fargo. Her musical interest remained the focal point of her life as she taught music, directed church choirs, taught violin lessons, played in string groups and sang in small groups. Pat married Robert Woods on July 7, 1950 at Norway Lutheran Church, rural Hillsboro. They moved to Hettinger for 10 years and then to Hillsboro where she resided until her death.

Pat was a member of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church participating in many activities. She was a member of a women’s trio for over 50 years. She has been a member of the Hillsboro Women’s Club since 1959, Traill County Historical Society, Legion Auxiliary, North Dakota Music Association, and the Retired Teachers Association. Pat was a 50 year member of the Order of the Eastern Star and served many years as Mother Advisor of the International Order of Rainbow Girls and served as their Rainbow State Mom in 1979.

Pat’s love of teaching and family has always been evident in the example of her life. Her love of music for life-long enrichment was the legacy she left for us. We have all enjoyed many of Pat’s creative endeavors.

Pat is survived by her children – William (Joni) Woods of Grand Forks, ND; Mary Larson of Hillsboro; and Richard Woods of Hillsboro; her grandchildren – Tammy (Michael) Yarber, Kathryn Larson, and Heather Woods; and two very special great-grandsons – Jaxon and Mavrik Yarber. Also surviving is her brother, Duane (Shirley) Nysveen; her sisters-in-law, Lorna Nysveen and Donna Woods; her brother-in-law, John “Phil” Woods; and many nieces and nephews.

Pat was preceded in death by her husband, Robert “Bob” who passed on December 9, 2009; her brothers – Jerome (Aagot) Nysveen and Myron Nysveen; her sister-in-law, Louise (Howard) Dunlop; and her brothers-in-law, Dallas Woods and Raymond Woods.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, the Hillsboro Medical Center, or to a charity of choice.

MEMORIAL SERVICE: 1 PM Thursday, August 31, 2017 at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Hillsboro

VISITATION: 5-7 PM Wednesday at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Hillsboro

PRAYER SERVICE: 7 PM Wednesday at the church

BURIAL: Private family burial will take place at the Norway Church Cemetery near Hillsboro.

All friends and former students of Pat’s are invited to join in singing with the Our Savior’s Lutheran Church Choir for her funeral service. Rehearsal will take place on Wednesday evening at 8 PM at the church following her prayer service. All are welcome to join!


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14 responses to “Orella “Pat” Woods”

  1. Lupe and Leslie De La Cruz says:

    Many condolences to all. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. She will be missed by many.

  2. Shannon (Borke) VanHorn says:

    When I think of “Mrs. Woods,” how can I NOT help but think of music. From Christmas Programs (complete with Jesus, Mary, Joseph, and angels) to the Spring Sing to music class to lumi sticks to chorus, she touched numerous children with her love of music and ignited a fire in my heart. We were so blessed to have her as our music teacher. Sending prayers of comfort to all of you and thank you for sharing your mom with all of us. I truly believe she is now singing with the angels.

  3. Tammi Mooney says:

    Love you Aunty Pat!

  4. Bonnie Reid says:

    Pat was a light on the planet and I just loved her. She was one of the finest people I ever met. She and Mom and Jean were gifts to the town of Hillsboro. I am blessed to have known her.

  5. Sharon Lemm Hardwick says:

    I have no doubt the angels were singing as they greeted Pat, and she will have them all organized into a proper heavenly choir with 4 part harmony within the week. Thoughts and prayers to the family. Your mom was much loved and fondly remembered!

  6. Sue Mjoness Bugge says:

    So very sorry to hear of Pat’s passing!!! She was a wonderful lady and we are so glad that we actually got to be her colleagues in the 80’s. She will be missed!!! What a role model for all walks of life and a real classy lady!!!

    Jim and Sue

  7. Cherie Storhoff says:

    What a lady. What a legacy. May all these beautiful memories bring you peace and smiles. Thinking of you all.

  8. Mary Muhs says:

    Dear Mary and Katy, and Pats sons also.

    I am so very sorry to read of Pats death. What an outstanding special lady she was and will always be so very special to me. We had many miles of fun times, traveling with Rainbow.
    She was PRECIOUS to all that knew her.
    We thank God that she came into our lives and blessed us all.

    Our love, prayers and sincere sympathy.
    ‘mom’ mary and Bob

  9. LouAnn and Devin Lusso says:

    Our condolences to the Woods family, she was a very special lady!

  10. Janice Sather says:

    Pat was such an amazing lady. She was an amazing Rainbow supporter for many years. Her gift of music added so much.🌈🌈

  11. Pam White says:

    Mary and Katy, my memories of Pat revolve around Rainbow, of course. She and I served on the Senior Executive Board together for several years. Her guidance and friendship were such a blessing. I am honored to have known her. May God Bless her memory and heal your sorrowing hearts. Pam White Williston

  12. Stephanie Burrell says:

    My thoughts and prayers are with the families of Mrs.Woods. Music was a highlight of my day! All of the Christmas programs to the Spring sings. She was a wonderful teacher and person.

  13. Kirk Overmoe says:

    So sorry for your loss and the community of Hillsboros loss. Pat was an amazing woman and musician who will truly be missed by all who knew her.

  14. Barbara (Vettel) West says:

    Mothers are so special, I am sorry for your loss. What a blessing to have had her for so many years.
    I live in Hettinger, and people used to ask about your folks when they first learned I was from Hillsboro. Your dad was the County agent out here. I just wanted you to know that they were remembered. My sympathies on your loss.

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