May 30, 1941 ~ July 19, 2023 (age 82) 82 Years Old


Rodney Wayne Sando passed away in his home Wednesday, July 19, 2023 after a long battle with cancer.  He was 82.

Rod was born May 30, 1941 in Independence, Iowa and was raised on the family farm in Ogilvie, Minnesota where he graduated high school.

Rod was an alumnus of the University of Minnesota. He held a master’s degree in forestry and wildlife management.

Rod Sando was a life-long conservationist, dedicated to preserving and managing the Earth’s natural resources wherever he could. In his professional life Rod became well known for his expertise in fighting wildfires and for his skill in managing natural resources. His career began as a smoke jumper in Montana. That experience and his dedication to education and research led to his role as Director of Forestry for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, which ultimately led to roles as the Commissioner of the Minnesota DNR, Director of Idaho Fish and Game, and finally Executive Director of the Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Authority, a consortium consisting of 4 state fish and wildlife agencies, two federal agencies and 13 Indian Tribes all managing by consensus the fish and wildlife resources of the Columbia River Basin.

After retirement, Rod served as a Science and Policy Advisor for the Northwest Sportfishing Industry Association in his free time between hunting and fishing expeditions.

An avid outdoorsman, hunter and angler, Rodney was most at home with a line in the water or out walking the hunting grounds with his dogs.  Rod will be dearly missed by his family and all who knew him.

Rod is preceded in death by parents Dick and Leona Sando, daughter Sara Thompson, and brother-in-law Waldo Randall.

He is survived by his wife Janice Eckman-Sando; daughters, Sue Graham and Erika Sando; son Kyle Sando; stepdaughters, Kelly Coker and Kineta (Matthew) Hardin; 8 grandchildren; sisters, Kathy (Maynard) Berland, Dixie Randall and Marilyn Lindquist; and many other relatives and friends.

A Celebration of Life will be held at 2:00 pm on Sunday, August 13, 2023 at the Braham Event Center. 

A time of visitation with refreshments will be held from 1:00-2:00 pm at the Event Center. 

Inurnment will follow the service at the Fish Lake Cemetery near Mora.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of ROD SANDO, please visit our floral store.

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Memorial Visitation
August 13, 2023

1:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Braham Event Center
655 8th Street SW
Braham, MN 55006

Celebration of Life
August 13, 2023

2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Braham Event Center
655 8th Street SW
Braham, MN 55006

August 13, 2023

3:00 PM
Fish Lake Cemetery


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