Michael D. Wolter

Michael D. Wolter

June 1, 1940 - September 21, 2021

After a long battle with cancer and other serious ailments, Michael Duane Wolter of Hinckley, passed away at the Mora Hospital on September 21, 2021. Born on June 1, 1940, he was 81 years old.

Mike enjoyed a long, fruitful life and we are bereaved because he is gone but as you shall see, the family is focusing on celebrating the life of a truly remarkable individual.

Mike was born and raised on a small Brown Swiss dairy farm near Cloverdale. He shared farm chores with brothers Ed, Al, Merv and sister Carol (Susie). His education began in 1946 at the one room Cloverdale school. However, his real education began earlier when he started tinkering (spelled dissecting,aka destroying) with anything mechanical that he could get his hands on. This obsession to “see what’s inside“ stood him well when his skill in destroying became a skill at fixing.

After a spirited courtship, Mike married the love of his life Lauretta Mariott, from Emmons, Minn. In 1963 they were married at the Church in Cloverdale Minnesota. In 1964 they had Tamara Lynn, whom they adored. Tammy often joked they didn’t have more kids because they got it right on the first try.  

Uncle Mike as he became known later in life simply had “The Knack.“ Mike’s ability to fix anything was a hallmark of his life and made him a multitude of friends. He was equally well known for his joke telling and infectious giggle, often at his own jokes. Mike was absolutely thrilled to make other people laugh and believed passionately in, “You bring your own fun.”

Aside from his becoming a self-taught mechanical genius, what got him there was a fearlessness to tackle anything. Didn’t matter if it was repairing a lawnmower motor, fixing his brothers balky firearm, full  restoration of his beloved ‘71 Ford Bronco and Ford tractors to building bird houses and his own home.

After several hunting trips to Colorado, he fell in love with the Rocky Mountains. So much so that he and close friend Whitey struck out to seek their fortune in Colorado. They had no prearranged job, just a contact with the Luark Ranch where he hunted for several years.

Soon he had a job with a propane gas company. He returned to Minnesota to pack his belongings,  and he and Lauretta, like the pioneers of old, headed west to  start a new life in the mountains near Gypsum, Colorado.

In a few years he was managing the propane company and building a home fronting on the Colorado River. Some years later, he turned in his spurs at the propane company and launched his own propane business naming himself and the business, “The LP DOC“ (liquid propane) and the Doc from his initials, MD Wolter.

In 2005 he and Lauretta retired and returned to live in Cloverdale, only a few miles from where he grew up.

About the only regret the family ever heard from Mike was that a damaged knee from a motorcycle accident prevented him from joining the military and serving his country. He was a role model for Patriotism and the Constitution.

Country music was his favorite. He wired his workshop for sound and visitors were often treated to the music of older performers like Hank Thompson, Kitty Wells, Tom T. Hall, Hank Snow, Johnny Cash and every once in a while, Elvis. 

He was a lifelong sportsman having enjoyed innumerable fishing trips, some to Canada. His real outdoor love was deer hunting -white tailed, mule deer and elk. The “Colorado Room“ in his home is decorated with antlers, photographs and other outdoor memorabilia. To enrich his outdoor activities he became an avid snowmobiler (Arctic Cat, of course) and four wheeler enthusiast. Other hobbies included wood working and varmint hunting. To strengthen his shooting skill, he became an expert reloader for many rifle and pistol caliber‘s.

Mike is survived by his daughter Tamara of Pine City, sister Carol (Wolter) Bassa, of Brooksville, Florida, brother Allan of Hinckley and numerous cousins, nieces and nephews. Preceding him in death were his wife Lauretta, parents Emery and Walberg(Wally) Wolter, brothers Edwin and Mervyn.

At a date to be determined, there will be a celebration of life gathering for family and friends at the American Legion Hall in Hinckley.

Arrangements by Methven Funeral and Cremation Services, Tatting-Methven Chapel, Hinckley, Minnesota

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