Sally Nyquist

The campus community mourns the passing of Sally Nyquist, who died on Wednesday, May 11.  Sally joined the Bucknell Faculty in 1972 and after teaching for 32 years, retired as Professor Emeritus of Biology in 2004.

Sally was born Nov. 8, 1941, in Hutchinson, Minn. She grew up on a farm and attended a one-room rural school house for her first seven years. After graduation from high school and Wheaton College, she entered the Peace Corps where she worked on a general science curriculum development project and taught for two years at Pio Duran Memorial School in Guinobatan, Albay, Philippines. Upon returning from the Peace Corps, she obtained her Ph.D. in cell biology at Purdue University.

While students and their learning and general welfare were always her concern, she also maintained a very active research laboratory. She authored many papers and was the recipient of numerous grants from agencies such as the National Institutes of Health. She taught multiple courses in cell biology and microanatomy. She prided herself in the rigor of the courses she taught and in the student’s mastery of the discipline. In 2002 she received a Bucknell Presidential Award for Teaching Excellence. She took her turn serving as Chair of the Biology Department and chaired the Program in Cell Biology & Biochemistry from its inception in 1989 to the time of her retirement.

Sally was heavily involved in many campus activities. She served as Judicial Administrator for Sexual Assault for several years and later continued to serve on its panels. She also served two terms on the University Review Committee and one year as its chair.

During her 1993/94 Sabbatical, Sally received a Fulbright Senior Lectureship in Cell and Molecular Biology. She spent the year teaching and conducting workshops on molecular biology labs at Stella Maris College in Chennai, India. She loved her time in India and, upon return, became very involved in the support of various international student activities. In 2002, she was the recipient of the Burma-Bucknell Award for the Promotion of International and Intercultural Understanding.

Sally loved to cook and particularly to bake; her specialty was pies. She was also proficient in cooking south Indian dishes. After retirement, her gardens tended to proliferate. Her daffodil gardens were spectacular and late in life she naturalized crocus into her front lawn creating another spectacular display.

She was very active in First Baptist Church, Lewisburg, where she served regularly on the Board of Deacons (as Moderator of the Deacons on two occasions), taught an adult Sunday school class, and served on other boards. Sally was on the board of the Lewisburg Chapter of AID (Association for India’s Development) which provided much of the financial support for a girl’s home for tribal and backward caste girls in Kerala, India.

Sally is survived by two brothers, Joel Nyquist, of Cokato, Minn., and Peter and his wife Susan, of Dassel, Minn., and a sister-in-law, Kathy Nyquist, of Cokato. She is also survived by eight nieces and nephews and their children, Darla with son Luke Nyquist, of Champlin, Minn., Matt and Jenny Nyquist with children, Tyler, Zachary, Chase and Bennett, of Independence, Minn., Joshua and Heidi Nyquist with children, Megan, Katie and Emma of 2 / 3 Minneapolis, Minn., Benjamin and Kristi Nyquist with children, Caleb, Abigail and Olivia, of St. Paul, Minn., and Anjali and Zach Timonen, of Hopkins, Minn., Kerry and Joshua Schimmel with children, Evan, Eli, Ian, and Ariel, of Cokato, Kristin and Eric Dahlke, of Dassel, Minn., and Brent and Amy Nyquist, with children, Regan and Tyler, of Cokato.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Eugene and Martha Nyquist; her brother, Maurice Nyquist, and her sister-in-law, Darlene Nyquist.

A memorial service will be held at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, May 14, at First Baptist Church, 51 S. Third St., Lewisburg, with the Rev. MacKenzie Scott officiating.

If desired, memorial contributions may be made to AID Lewisburg, P.O. Box 538, Lewisburg, PA; to the First Baptist Church, 51 S. Third St., Lewisburg, PA; or to Evangelical Hospice, 130 Hospital Drive, Lewisburg, PA 17837.

Arrangements are by Roupp Funeral Home Inc. Mifflinburg.

Members of the Bucknell Community are encouraged to visit our In Memoriam Site at and share personal notes of sympathy and remembrance with others.

On behalf of the entire Bucknell community, I extend our deepest sympathies to Sally’s family, as well as to all who knew her at Bucknell.


John C. Bravman

One Response to “Sally Nyquist”

  1. jchunter says:

    My sincere condolences to her family and colleagues in biology. I only overlapped with Sally for two years at Bucknell, but I always admired how brightly the fire burned in her right to the end of her career: she kept teaching, kept learning, and kept exploring right to the end. May she rest in peace.

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