FORT?DODGE?- Harold (Mike) Alfred Michaelson, Jr. passed away Sunday, April 9, 2017, at The Barber Hospice Home after a long illness.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, April 13, 2017, at First Congregational United Church of Christ in Fort Dodge with Rev. Joey Feldmann, officiating. Immediately following the services there will be Military Rites conducted by the V.F.W. Post 1856 and the 133rd Test Squadron Honor Guard. Visitation will be 4-7 p.m. on Wednesday at Laufersweiler-Sievers Funeral Home of Fort Dodge.
The son of Harold Sr. and Lauretta Billerbeck Michaelson, Mike was born Oct. 7, 1937 in Norfolk, Neb. As a young child, his family moved to LeMars, where he attended Catholic Schools. He joined the Iowa Army National Guard in 1954 and graduated from St. Josephs High School in 1955. He attended what was then Westmar College in LeMars and also Iowa State University. He married Marilyn Ruden in 1957 and they later divorced. In Nevada, IA, Mike worked for the Department of Transportation as an engineering technician, helping to design parts of Interstate 35. He moved to Estherville, where he became assistant county engineer for Emmet County. During his time in Estherville, Mike was local campaign manager for Terry Branstad in his bid for the Lt. Governors post. He was also a Boy Scout troop leader and a member of the North Central Iowa Councils of Government. In May, 1975, Mike married Phyllis Haze Canfield in Estherville. He took night classes from Mankato State University, graduating in 1977 with a degree in geography. The couple moved to Humboldt in 1978 where Mike became sales representative for Humboldt Concrete Products and eventually part owner. They later moved to Fort Dodge in 1989 while he continued to work for H.C.P. He held the post of President of the Concrete Pipe Association of Iowa from 1996 to 1998. He retired in 2002. Mike retired from the Army National Guard during this time after 20 years of service.
Upon retirement, Mike and Phyllis enjoyed 12 years of traveling, taking road trips throughout the United States, and also cruises to the Southern Caribbean, Panama Canal, Hawaii and the Mediterranean. They traveled to Australia, Tasmania and New Zealand, and began spending winters in Mexico and Florida until his declining health allowed them to spend more time with family and friends.
Mike was a member of the First Congregational United Church of Christ, the Lakeside Golf Course, the Fort Dodge Noon Sertoma, and American Legion. He was an avid Iowa State Cyclone supporter and staunch Republican, enjoying the challenge of debating politics. Besides traveling, he enjoyed cooking, playing golf, reading and watching old Westerns on TV. Mike will always be remembered not only for his love and dedication to his family, but also his cooking skills, making the chili for his church's Election Night Soup and Pie Supper, his famous BBQ spare ribs which he enjoyed making for friends and neighbors every Fourth of July for many years.
Mike is survived by his wife, Phyllis, sons Jeff (Jolene) of Mason City, and Brian Canfield (Elena) of Bellevue, Neb.; daughters, Lisa LaVigne (Corey) of Ankeny, Amy Canfield Stoll (Norm) of Cedar Falls, and Jody Canfield Peterson (Mike) of Yutan, Neb.; granddaughters Ashley (John) Phelps of Clive, Olivia Gaudineer of Newport, R.I., Samantha Stoll, Iowa City; Rachael Peterson of Yutan, Neb., and Taylor LaVigne of Syracuse, N.Y.; and grandsons Logan Stoll of Cedar Falls, Blake Peterson of Lincoln, Neb., and Michael Canfield of Bellevue, Neb.; one great-grandchild, Theodore Phelps; sisters LuAnn McFarland, St. Louis, Mo., Margaret (Paul) Hering, Phoenix, Arix., and Rita (Lowell) Habeger of Sioux City; many cousins, nieces and nephews, and great nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents and brother, John.
Memorials may be left to the First Congregational United Church of Christ, Friendship Haven or Paula J. Barber Hospice Home.