Comet News

August 31-September 7th, 2022 Volume 12, Issue 1

Welcome Back!

This year the Comet News has a new look and frequency of editions. Check us out weekly on Wednesdays for updates on our school's events, the Alexander's Activities Club's events, and stories that allow you to get to know our staff and students.

The Comet Student Perspective

Getting to Know the APS Staff: New Additions Part 1

Community Connections

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The Story of Phylis and the late Dallas Hystad

Dallas was born on November 14, 1919 to Henry and Emma Pagel Hystad at their home in the Farland community. He graduated from Watford City High School and attended North Dakota State School of Science in Wahpeton for welding. He was drafted into the Air Force for over 3 years in World War II, he came back home and purchased his ranch in 1947.


Phylis was born on July 14, 1928 to Harold and Elsie Gessner Lynner in Watford City. She was second born of 5 siblings. She attended grade school at the Braaten and Roalsvig schools south or Arnegard and graduated from Arnegard High School in 1946. She received a Teacher Certificate from Minot State and taught rural schools for 4 years.


Phylis and Dallas were married on June 20, 1948 at the Zoar Church south of Arnegard. They moved to the ranch north or Arnegard where Dallas resided until his death. On the ranch, they raised Simmental cattle, quarter horses, small grains and hay. Dallas was one of the founding members of the North Dakota Simmental Cattle Association and they were both active members. Phylis helped out on the farm as needed and was always sure to have lunch ready. In 1964, Phylis started working for the ND Statistical Reporting Service and worked for them for 22 years. She was the first woman in North Dakota to work for them.


They had 5 children: Roger, Darrell, Calvin, Craig and Lloyd. They enjoyed the boys’ help on the ranch as well as following them to all their wrestling, rodeo and 4-H events.

Once the boys were gone, they welcomed their grandchildren with loving arms. They both were a very big part of their grandchildren’s lives. Memories their grandchildren recall include: pop shakes, skittles and starbursts, baking, many 4-H projects, sandwiches when we would get home from school, crying with grandpa as we would load out our 4-H steers, whisker rubs from grandpa and grandma cheating at memory! Many life lessons were learned from grandma and grandpa. They attended as many events of their grandchildren as they possibly could.


They enjoyed traveling and visiting family. They had attended several National Finals Rodeos traveling with the bank group. They also traveled throughout the US, Canada and Norway. Phylis was able to visit Europe with her son Darrell and his family. They would visit family in Norway and then loved hosting them here in ND. Family gatherings were a highlight for them. Phylis has always had a special interedt in genealogy and can tell you anything about either her or Dallas’s family history. Heck, she probably even knows your family history!


History in general was something that Phylis has been passionate about. She was a member of the McKenzie County Historical Society. Being active in this, she sparked an interest in formulating a book of all the cemeteries in the county and worked to honor all those that went with unmarked graves. Doing this she compiled the book “The Final Resting Place”.


Dallas was an active member of the Masonic Lodge in Watford City. Phylis was a member of the McKenzie County VFW Auxillary and currently a member of the Moose Lodge. Both her and Dallas were very active in the 4-H program. They vested many hours volunteering or hauling kids to and fro. They were active with their children, grandchildren and hopefully her great grandchildren will get to learn 4-H from her too!


Dallas passed away just four days prior to his 85th birthday on November 10, 2004 after having family gatherings to celebrate this milestone.

Phylis remained living on the ranch after Dallas’s death until 2015 when she moved into an apartment in Williston. She continues to be active at the ripe age of 94. She enjoys visiting with friends and family, watching game shows, quilting and is an active member of the Light of Christ Church.


As for the sons, Roger and Chris live in Glasgow, MT. He worked for the REC, but has since retired. They have 3 children: Brandi, Jesse and Luke. Brandi has 2 children and resides Gillette, WY. Jesse and Farah live in Glasgow, MT and they have 2 children. Luke lives in a suburb of Los Angeles, CA.


Darrell and Debbie live in Glendive, MT. He has worked in the oilfield for over 40 years and now is retired. They have 2 daughters: Darcie and Trevor Waarvik and their 3 sons live in Glasgow; Darla and Randy Ostrom live in Rhinelander, WI and have 1 son.

Calvin passed away on January 12, 1984. He had 2 sons: Shawn and Michaela live near Great Falls, MT and they have 2 daughters; Cameron and Kim live in Helotes, TX and the have 3 children.


Craig and Lona live on a farm near Arnegard. Craig ranches and is now retired from the oilfield. Their children are: Cassie and Darel Haak and their 3 children of Arengard, Casey and Wendy live Buchanan, ND with their 5 children, Caydee lives in Williston with her daughter, and Charlie and Mason Moe and their son live in Williston.

Llyod passed away January 21, 1961.