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Michael L. Smith
March 13, 1953 ~ November 4, 2023 (age 70) 70 Years Old
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Michael Leandry Smith (Mike), widely known as Iron Mike, peacefully passed away November 4, 2023. Mike fought so hard to stay with us; but in the end, God took him to his heavenly home. Mike never complained and was so appreciative of the love and support he received over the years and especially the past year as he battled cancer in addition to COPD and other co-morbidities. Mike was born March 13, 1953, to Eileen Kasper Smith and the late Carl Smith in Appleton, Wisconsin. Mike was a 1972 graduate of Appleton East. Mike managed the Kentucky Fried Chicken store near the former Valley Fair Mall for four years. In 1973 Mike started at Miller Electric Mfg., retiring after almost 39 years.
On June 2, 1973, Mike married the love of his life, Diane Diedrich, and recently celebrated 50 years of marriage. They were blessed with four children, Michael, Kelli, and twins Janelle and Steven. Later, eight beautiful grandchildren joined them. Mike loved his family so much. He enjoyed fishing, bowling, cooking (BAM!), watching old Western TV shows and drawing.
Mike is survived by his wife, Diane, son, Michael (Lisa) and their children, Hailey and Bridgette; daughter, Kelli Logan and her children, Nicholas and Benjamin and their father, Chad Logan; daughter, Janelle Vander Linden (Chad) and their children, Chase and Seth; son, Steven (Amy) and their children, Ethan and Lauren. Mike is further survived by his mother, Eileen Smith, siblings; Carleen Smith, Pat Ellenbecker, Tom (Donna) Smith, Kathy (John) Josephs, sister-in-law Vicki Moen Smith, Aunt Susan Manalli and Aunt Yvonne Hanneman. Mike also is survived by Diane’s family; Joe (Kathy) Diedrich, Linda Kahler, Janet (Jeff) Tessen, and Karen (Don) Marx. Mike also is survived by numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
Mike is predeceased by his father, Carl Smith, brother Lee Smith, brother-in-law Cy Ellenbecker, parents-in-law Joseph and Joan Diedrich, sister-in-law Donna (Bryan) Mangan, brother-in-law Dan Kahler, as well as parental and maternal grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins.
In keeping with Mike’s wishes, private family services were held. Accordingly, in memory of Mike, go enjoy the things Mike enjoyed at any of his favorites: Jacob’s Meat Market, Camelot, Cinders, Scubas, The Northland and Capitol Centre.
The family would like to thank his numerous doctors, nurses and many other health care professionals, especially Cherry Meadows, Rennes Health Center and ThedaCare at Home Hospice.
Mike, you now are with God and joined by all your loved ones who left before you. We hope you breathe freely. Sit, stand and walk again. Eat again. Go fishing again. Laugh again. Enjoy a cold one. You have the biggest heart. There is no one like you, and you never will be forgotten. Your family loves you so very much, and we will miss you.