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Monday, November 20, 2023
4:00 - 7:00pm (Central time)
Tuesday, November 21, 2023
Starts at 10:30am (Central time)
Michael "Mike" S. Gardner, age 54 of Lake Crystal, passed away on Wednesday, November 15, 2023 at home, surrounded by family.
Funeral Mass will be 10:30am Tuesday, November 21, 2023 at Holy Family Catholic Church, Lake Crystal with burial at Holy Family Cemetery. Visitation will be 4:00-7:00 Monday at Lake Crystal Mortuary. to leave a condolence for the family or view the service livestream visit her obituary at www.mankatomortuary.com.
Michael was born August 19, 1969 in Mankato to William and Patricia (Miller) Gardner. He graduated from Lake Crystal High School in 1987 and attended Normandale Community College, graduating with a degree in hospitality. After graduation Mike worked and managed several restaurants, including The Green Mill in Plymouth, Ruttles, Garden Inn and 101 Main in Mankato. In addition, The Kaiserhoff and The Schnitzelbank in New Ulm. He was also instrumental in helping with starting up the Time's Sports Bar in Lake Crystal. He loved people and good food, so he was a perfect fit in the hospitality service. He also spent many years working as a custody officer for Blue Earth County. Mike was united in marriage to Kristi J. Larson on September 26, 2008 in Lake Crystal. Mike loved helping people. Which is why he became a volunteer for Lake Crystal Volunteer Fire Department and first responder. He spent 15 years with the department. After his retirement, when he spoke about his time with the department his face would light up with enthusiasm. He said having to retire from the department because of his disabilities was one of the hardest things he'd ever had to go through. He was active with Ducks Unlimited, MN Pheasants Inc of Blue Earth County, and Sons of the American Legion. He enjoyed hunting and fishing, watching MN Sports, cooking, slow pitch softball, "singing" karaoke, and collecting coins, beer cans, baseball cards and footballs cards; basically, a hoarder. Most importantly he enjoyed time with his family, especially his grandkids. Mike was a jovial soul and the life of the party. He had the type of personality that people gravitated towards. You were a stranger but only once to him. Even with his failing health, he always kept his humor, personality and the Gardner stubbornness. The number of lives that Mike touched and impacted are immeasurable.
Left to remember Mike are his wife, Kristi; children: Courtney, and Collin; step children: Katie (Carlos) Medina, Laura (Jared) Landwer, Kasey (Mitch) Golombecki, Kelly (Brian) Schultz, and Ryan Paulson; grandchildren: Bella, Emma and Elijah Medina, Macy and Olivia Golombecki, Muriella, Madelyn, Ben and William Schultz; loving brother, Bill; In-laws: Reggie and Marge Larson; and many other realtives and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents.
The live stream link below is a complimentary service provided by Mankato Area Funeral Homes.
Unforeseen technical, internet, facility, and/or acoustical circumstances may produce a diminished end product. Please note, if the live stream does not appear, we are attempting to record and publish the service for later viewing.