Michael Piepenburg, 67

Michael John Piepenburg, age 67, of The Villages, FL, formerly of Dassel, MN, passed away after an unexpected illness Dec. 8, 2020, in Leesburg, FL.

Michael was born Aug. 26, 1953, in Litchfield, MN, to Floyd and Myra (Knutson) Piepenburg of Dassel.

Mike, Mikey, Big Mike P, the Big Pun, Michael Michael Motorcycle, or one of the many other nicknames he went by was a beloved father, grandfather, and friend to many.

Mike graduated from Dassel High School in 1971 and joined the United States Navy, where he served honorably until his medical discharge in 1973. Mike moved back to Dassel, where he and his former wife, Nancy, raised their four children.

Mike was a member of the Dassel Volunteer Fire Department, a longtime member of the Red Rooster Committee (lucky for us, that meant he knew the secret chicken recipe), and held a permanent seat at the Red Rooster Cafe, where it was said he told many great stories, and solved the world’s problems over morning coffee with his dear friends. He loved Dassel, and the people there, and did what he could to be involved around town.

In 2015, Mike decided to make the move to The Villages, FL, where he could spend more time golfing and away from the cold winters. His golf game steadily improved (with a few “bad” games here and there), and he was so proud to show off his hole-in-one card. If he wasn’t on the course or at home, you could likely find him eating breakfast at Sammy Joe’s or sitting at City Fire, cigar in hand, telling stories, jokes, or showing off pictures of his children and grandchildren.

He loved the ease of living where everything was accessible by golf cart, and he could take the scenic route. He didn’t leave “the bubble” of The Villages very often, but when he did, it was always to spend time with his family. Mike was immensely proud of all of his family and loved them dearly.

All he needed in life were his family, friends, a good cigar, and a comfy recliner. He lived his life fully, right to the end. All who knew Mike spoke of his endless love, infectious smile, and big bear hugs. The consensus among many is; there wasn’t a person he met who didn’t consider him a friend.

Mike is survived by his children: Christopher (April) Piepenburg, Heather (Chad) Behnken, all of Colorado Springs, CO, Miranda Piepenburg (Mark Harbarth) of Hutchinson, and Alexandria Danielson (Jordan) of Dassel; and grandchildren, Cole Piepenburg, Ryan and Taylor Worley, Darby and Delaney Behnken, Riley Melcher, Lily and Huxley Harbarth, and Harper Danielson.

He is further survived by brother, Ron (Barb) Piepenburg of Litchfield; sister, Suzanne Hicks of Dassel, and many other close family members.

Mike was preceded in death by his parents, Floyd and Myra Piepenburg.

© Herald Journal Publishing, Inc.