The Passing of Dave Rigsby

Sadly, Stetson University’s long serving grounds manager Dave Rigsby passed away this weekend. Dave had retired in January 2020 after spending 42 years as manager for Stetson Grounds and senior assistant for Special Projects. He began at Stetson on Oct. 2, 1978.

Prior to Stetson, Dave was a fixture in DeLand. He was superintendent of Parks for the City of DeLand in the late 1970s before then-Stetson President Pope Duncan, PhD, asked him to come to work for the university. Even during his time at Stetson — becoming immensely popular on campus among students, faculty and staff — Dave was a key leader in the city. He served as a DeLand city commissioner from 1980 to 1993, and mayor from 1993 to 2001, as well as on many other government boards and civic groups. He was a great influence on DeLand and the university, and his passing on Sunday has been noted in the local media, including the West Volusia Beacon.

Dave was known throughout the university for his dedication to making Stetson University a better place for the entire community and played a critical role in helping to transform the university grounds — grounds that in 2018 earned Stetson a spot among the “25 Most Beautiful College Campuses in the South” by Country Living magazine.

In lieu of flowers, donations to the Landscape Memorial Fund at Stetson University, made in Rigsby’s name, are welcome. Gifts can be mailed to Stetson University, Unit #8286, 421 N. Woodland Blvd., DeLand, FL 32723.  Gifts can also be made online at, in the Designation field, select “Other” and enter “Rigsby Landscape Memorial.”

For more about Dave Rigsby and the Landscape Memorial Fund set up in his honor, please go to Stetson Today.