Sid Cichy dies at 83 in Fargo
Fargo lost one of its legendary sons on Saturday. Sid Cichy died of complications from Alzheimer's disease at 83. The former Shanley High School football coach, Fargo city commissioner and local businessman was under the care of Hospice of the Re...
Fargo lost one of its legendary sons on Saturday. Sid Cichy died of complications from Alzheimer's disease at 83.
The former Shanley High School football coach, Fargo city commissioner and local businessman was under the care of Hospice of the Red River Valley at Rosewood on Broadway. His wife, Elaine, and five of his nine children were with him when he died.
Funeral ar-rangements are pending at Boulger Funeral Home in Fargo.
"It was time," said Mike Cichy, his oldest son.
Sid Cichy led Shanley to 16 state North Dakota high school football titles in his 30-year career, from 1948-77.
After he retired from coaching and teaching, he joined GPK Products of Fargo in 1978. He was a personnel director, special projects manager and corporate secretary. He retired in 1988.
He stuck his toe into politics, too, successfully running for the Fargo City Commission in 1976 and 1980.
Cichy was diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 1999.
The disease rapidly progressed in the past couple of years and especially in the past month.
"We recognized Alzheimer's a couple of years ago," Mike Cichy said. "It's tougher on everybody else than it is with the person. He was gone mentally."
In addition to his wife, he is survived by children Mike, Kate, Margaret, Joe, Mary, Nick, Greg, Elizabeth and Steve.
His sons all played football for him at Shanley. Mike and Joe went on to successful careers at North Dakota State. Steve was the most decorated of the football sons, having played at Notre Dame.
Sid Cichy took the Shanley head coaching job while he was still at North Dakota State. His first state title in 1953 was so cherished by Shanley fans that they bought him a Plymouth station wagon.
A photo of the family - with Sid in the driver's seat and kids throughout the wagon - was run the next day in The Forum.
"I have it in my office," Nick Cichy said. "There were six of us."
"As players, he showed the way we could be better than expected," Mike Cichy said. "We did things as a team. He brought out the best in us. He showed us that hard work and persistence can overcome limitations."
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Readers can reach Forum reporter Jeff Kolpack at (701) 241-5546