Michael Leo Fogarty, age 82 of Belle Plaine passed away on April 3, 2023, surrounded by family at Mayo Hospital in Mankato.
Mike was the eldest of 8 children, born on April 8, 1940, at St. Mary’s Hospital in Minneapolis to Michael T. and Edna (Kelly) Fogarty. He grew up on a farm south of Belle Plaine and attended country school and graduated from Belle Plaine High School in 1957. He married Shirley Druke on July 21, 1962, at St Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Belle Plaine and raised 5 children.
Mike was very involved in his community. He was an accomplished flight instructor and taught many friends and acquaintances to fly. He flew power line patrol for Nelson Ryan. He was a volunteer fireman, an elected City Council member and served as Interim Mayor of Belle Plaine. He belonged to the Knights of Columbus and Ancient Order of Hibernians. Much time spent at Pioneer Power, showing off his 1940 Farmall “B”. His love for traveling took them on many 5th wheel adventures throughout the United States. Mike and Shirley were “Super Fans” of all Grand children’s activities and were frequent flyers at any and all sporting events.
He started his commercial Airline Pilot career with North Central Airlines in 1967, where he was a pilot for 33 years and through multiple airline mergers retired with Northwest Airlines (Delta). During his career he started flying the Convair CV-580 and retired on the Boeing 747 during which he knew how to fly every plane in between.
He taught us to live life to the fullest. Mike and Shirley took full advantage of what the Airline Career offered. They had wonderful adventures and lived in many cities over their 60+ years of marriage.
Mike is survived by his wife, Shirley; children, Michael J. (Karen) Fogarty, Eden Prairie, Rochelle (Bob) Nielsen, Green Isle, Jeffrey Fogarty (friend, Anita Ernst), Belle Plaine, Stephanie (Doug), Fogarty-DeBlois, Arlington and Matt (Melanie) Fogarty, Belle Plaine; 20 grandchildren; Amy (Zac) Giammarrusco, Caitlin (Dustin) Halbert, Whitney (Jack) Fogarty, Mason Groth, Michael Groth, Sydney (Steven) Fogarty Busch, Cassie (Nick) Lind, Taylor (Jake) Behnke, Shayla (Chad) Bohn, Chelsey (Josh) Johnson, Jordan (Cameron) Fogarty, Faith (JB) Woodman, Alec (Alex) Fogarty Hentges, Chase (Stephanie) Hentges, Rachael (Benjamin) Hentges, Ryan (Courtney) DeBlois, Tyler DeBlois, Dominick Fogarty, Zac Fogarty, Jacob Fogarty; and 15.5 Great Grand Children, Jace Johnson, Sonny Hentges, Cora Johnson, Zoe Giammarrusco, Ziggy Hentges and baby Halbert, Kenzie Offerdahl, Charlie Offerdahl, Brodie Bohn, Vivi Lind, Bodie Lind, Evie Lind, Edison Behnke and Indie Behnke, Laney DeBlois, Rowen DeBlois
Siblings; MaryJo (Ty) Buesgens, Annette (George) Wagener, Julie (Stan) Brenke, Greg (friend Janet Palmer) Fogarty, Debra Terrio, Dennis (friend Heidi Nelson) Fogarty and many nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his parents, sister, Christy (Chandra) Uslan, brother in law, Jerry Terrio.
Visitation will be from 4-7 p.m. on Monday, April 17, 2023, at Kolden Funeral Home in Belle Plaine MN, and 1 hour prior to mass, Tuesday morning, April, 18, at the church from 9:30 -10:30 a.m.
Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Tuesday, April 18, 2023 at 10:30 a.m. at Our Lady of the Prairie Catholic Church in Belle Plaine, MN. Fr. Michael Kaluza and Fr. Roger Hessian will officiate. Interment will be at Sacred Heart Cemetery, Belle Plaine, MN.
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