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Bidding farewell to Jangula

WILLISTON -- For years, Tyler Jangula led his North Dakota State Bison teammates out of the tunnel with AC/DC's "Thunderstruck" filling the Fargodome.

WILLISTON - For years, Tyler Jangula led his North Dakota State Bison teammates out of the tunnel with AC/DC’s “Thunderstruck” filling the Fargodome.
In an all-too-fitting tribute, his NDSU teammates preceded the casket into First Lutheran Church on Saturday as the Bison anthem played through the speakers at his funeral.
One more time through the tunnel for No. 25.
Family, friends, teammates, coaches and more made for a standing-room-only crowd, many wearing Bison gear with Jangula’s name and number displayed.
Longtime Williston sportscaster Jon Cole delivered the eulogy, recalling his eight years covering Jangula, which began in American Legion baseball with the Williston Keybirds, and through his career at NDSU.
“He lived his life with passion,” Cole said. “He was a proud Coyote, and a proud Bison.”
He recalled Jangula as a warrior-athlete who outworked everyone on the field and listened to his coaches’ advice at the end of the day. Not only was he a great athlete, Cole said, but an outstanding person to represent Williston and western half of the state.
Among his favorite memories was during the Bison’s win over the Minnesota Golden Gophers in 2007. Jangula scored on a 5-yard pass in the first quarter to give NDSU its first lead of the game.
Cole was covering 9-man football in Crosby at the time, listening to game on his radio.
“What a great ride,” Cole said. “He was a kid from North Dakota. He was a kid from western North Dakota. He was a Coyote doing great things against the Minnesota Golden Gophers.”
Rev. Martin Mock said Thunderstruck was a metaphor for the day, saying the Williston and NDSU communities were struck by the death of their loved one, but also touched by the life he left behind.
Jangula has been remembered by family and friends for coming home to Williston and helping with the Coyote football program, and also returning to help the NDSU squads
He was a hometown kid, who didn’t get forget where his hometown was at. He remained close to many of his Williston friends, and when he moved back after college, sought out Cole for his home phone number to stay in touch.
Cole said Jangula represented the city and his team well. He was always the player to help the team first, and was always ready to go out to battle on the field.
“Craig Bohl would always say to me that he wanted to find another Tyler Jangula,” Cole said. “Tyler Jangula, from Williston, North Dakota. That gives hope to the kids in Crosby, in Watford City and all over.”
Jangula’s death on Feb. 1 resonated deeply in the Williston and NDSU communities. He died of complications from surgery at the age of 28. A cause of death has not been released.
His former coaches and friends had an outpouring of sympathy to the family throughout the last week, while remembering the young man and how he touched their lives.
Former Williston coach Mark Slotsve called it a “tough week” for Williston, a sentiment made clear by the support shown Saturday.
A support that echoes the statement that Jangula will not be forgotten.
“Hang in there, because we’re going to get through this,” Cole said finishing the eulogy. “This is his home. This is his home.”

Related Topics: COLLEGE FOOTBALL
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