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Cleo Mikel

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“It would have like to have met him before his memory got the best of him... Gives me a whole new meaning to veterans and the importance of what they...Read More ยป
1 of 1 | Posted by: Catrina Mikel - Lebanon, MO

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Cleo Mikel, 94, of Battle Creek died at the Battle Creek Veterans Affairs Medical Center on Thursday, March 2, 2017.

Cleo was born February 1, 1923 in Marcellus, Michigan to Elmer and Terracotta (Barber) Mikel. He grew up in Wakelee, Michigan and was raised by his aunt and uncle, Will and Hettie Barber. Cleo served in the U.S. Army during WWII in the European Theater of Operations as a military policeman, with comprehensive knowledge for the use and care of all guns. He had over 90 German soldiers surrender to him and followed him back to camp in order that they may obtain help. He was never officially recognized for this, but it is one of many interesting stories from WWII. Cleo was employed as a welder for many years at Whites Manufacturing in Elkhart, Indiana until the company closed. He retired as a welder for the Bendix Corporation in South Bend, Indiana.

Cleo was formerly married to Ruth Myrtle (Eaglebarger) Reed, who is now deceased. Surviving are daughters, Barbara McKowen of Bradenton, FL, Delores (Richard) Minisee of Cassopolis, MI; a son, Devon (Judy) Mikel of the Philippines, brothers, Lyle (Rosie) Mikel and Ronnie Mikel of Marcellus, MI; sister, Wanda Mikel of Marcellus, MI; sister-in-law, Cindy Mikel of Cassopolis, MI; 16 grandchildren; numerous great-grandchildren, cousins, nieces, nephews and their families; his best friend, Gordon Walkington and many friends.

Cleo was also preceded in death by a son, Daniel Mikel; two twin daughters, Debra Sobczak and Denise Mikel Sandusky; brothers, Gordon, Richie and Bob Mikel; sisters, Iva Lesiewicz, Wilda Mikel and Frances Norton; one granddaughter, Tracie Goodman; and a great granddaughter, Monicia Paplow.

Cleo loved being outdoors and taught his children to live off the land. He also enjoyed helping neighbors fix their lawnmowers and equipment, mushroom hunting, mowing grass and fishing.

Graveside services will be held at Poe Cemetery, Jones, MI, on Born St. east of M-40 at 1:30 p.m., Monday, March 6, 2017 where U.S. Army military honors will be presented and family members will remember Cleo.

Arrangements are by Farley-Estes & Dowdle Funeral Home & Cremation Care. Personal messages for the family may be placed at