Michael Earl, 79, Clarks Grove, died Sunday, Aug. 16, 2020, following health issues.
A private funeral service with burial was Friday, Aug. 21, at the Maplewood Cemetery in Luverne with full military honors.
Michael Earl was born Oct. 7, 1940, to Joe and Opal (Barclay) Earl in Luverne. He attended and graduated from Luverne High School in 1958.
Following graduation, at age 17, Mike enlisted in the United States Navy. He served his country with tours to Hong Kong, Hawaii, and Japan, while being stationed in San Diego. After his honorable discharge from the military, Mike hitchhiked back to Minnesota and worked with his father in the family business. He was later employed in the appliance repair department at Sears.
On April 27, 1962, he married Sharon (Sherry) Bryngelson in Worthington, and soon thereafter they moved to Catalina Island, California. A year later they returned to Minnesota where they raised their three children.
Mike dedicated his professional life to serving as a refrigeration expert and was passionate about his career – whether in teaching refrigeration, serving as a consultant, or operating his own business. In 1969 the family moved to Clarks Grove where Mike served as one of the first instructors at the Albert Lea Vo-Tech College. Mike enjoyed working with his customers and spent more than 30 years in the area while successfully running his business, Mike’s Refrigeration.
He enjoyed golfing, camping, and taking Sherry for rides on his prized yellow 1976 Honda GoldWing. Mike also enjoyed spending time in the kitchen. He was proud of the remodeling and improvements he made to the family home over the years and enjoyed tinkering in the garage. He enjoyed time with the family around the campfire and treasured his family.
Mike served as a city council member in Clarks Grove, was a member of the Albert Lea Elks, the American Legion, and was an avid card club member.
He is survived by his wife, Sherry; children Tammy (Matt Callahan) Claussen of Albert Lea, Joe (Robin Straka-Earl) Earl of Plano, Texas, and Todd (Heather) Earl of Clarks Grove; grandchildren Beth (Mike) Lahann, Niki (Wyatt) Krager, Brendan, Payton and Jordyn Earl; four great-grandchildren; a sister, Debbie (Jim) Fox; and sisters-in-law, Carol and Ruby Bryngelson.
Mike was preceded in death by his parents, grandson Brett Earl, and brothers-in-law Brad and Brian Bryngelson.
Arrangements were provided by Bonnerup Funeral Home of Albert Lea, www.bonnerupfuneralservice.com.