By Starrla Cray
WINSTED, MN What’s your favorite part of Winsted Summer Festival? For Mike and Sue Henrich, that’s an easy question to answer.
“The parade. Without a doubt,” Mike said.
“We have family that comes and watches it with us,” Sue added.
For the past 30 years or so, Mike has been in the parade for his duties as police chief. When he retired the end of February, he thought he’d be watching this year’s parade from the sidelines.
Instead, Mike and Sue will be riding together, as the 2014 Winsted Summer Festival grand marshals.
“We feel very honored to be asked,” Mike said.
Mike and Sue have made Winsted their home for many years. Mike, who grew up in Wadena, came to the area in 1979, when he was hired as a Winsted police officer.
Sue grew up on a farm at the corner of Cologne, Waconia, and Chaska, the middle child in a family of nine.
“I was number five, so there were four older ones and four younger ones,” she said, adding that there was always something to do, including chores and milking cows before school.
Sue first came to Winsted to attend Holy Trinity High School. After she graduated in 1980, she stayed in the area, and met Mike.
“We’ve been married for 30 years,” Mike said.
While Mike served as police chief, Sue pursued a career in long-term care. Currently, she is the recreation director at Good Samaritan in Waconia.
Sue is involved in many volunteer activities through her job, and she also enjoys helping with the Winstock Country Music Festival each year.
She and Mike are both members of Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Winsted, where they serve as Eucharistic ministers.
Mike volunteers with Winsted Holding Activities That Unite People (WHAT UP), St. Mary’s Walk of Hope, Winstock, and the Knights of Columbus.
This year, he also helped with the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) program.
“That was never work,” Mike said, adding that he enjoys working with children.
Mike and Sue have two adult children of their own.
Their son, Brandon, serves with the US Navy, and was deployed to the Middle East in April.
Their daughter, Samantha, lives in Watertown with her husband, Kyle Horsman, and two children: 3.5-year-old Caden and newborn baby Devin.
“We’re very blessed,” Mike said.