Michael Kanieski  

MikeIt is my sad duty to inform you that our classmate, and my loyal friend, Mike Kanieski died on December 19, 2015 at his home in Louisiana.

Mike contacted me in mid-August to let me know that he had been diagnosed with
pancreatic cancer. At that time, he suggested that we talk weekly as long as he was able. Last week, was the last time we were able to talk. We agreed that those hour- long talks on Sunday evenings were precious to us both. We shared a love for music that overlapped his appreciation for bluegrass and mine for the blues. We talked about working with our hands and of you, our classmates at Hibbing High. He faced dying with humor, courage, honesty and no regrets.

Mike and I had gone in different directions but we always stayed in touch. After the Navy, Mike remained in Hibbing/Chisholm until retirement. After selling his company, Rigging and Wear, Mike and his wife Su moved to a home on a rural lake in Louisiana. As he put it: "Sixty miles from a good restaurant".

Mike was more than my pal; he was a member of the Salo family and was loved by all of us. We considered him our brother. For my parent's 51st wedding anniversary, Mike sent them to San Diego to spend Christmas with my family. Wow!

We became friends in the high school gym playing lunchtime basketball. Mike was a very good basketball player who played with the Blue Jackets in his senior year and then in the Navy until a shoulder injury ended his playing career.

Mike spent his early years in Kittsville at the home of his grandparents and then moved to Park Addition with his mother, Fran. Mike's children, Michelle, Patrick and Jennifer have all moved from the Iron Range.

Insofar as I live in Queensland, Australia, I will miss the 55th reunion of our class.

Many of you have known Mike all of your lives. Since we were 16, he has been my enduring friend. I would not want that event to pass without a proper
acknowledgement of a good man and classmate. My pal, Mike Kanieski.

Mark Salo