Michael D. Curless

February 23, 1937 ~ December 24, 2023

Michael D. Curless, 86, of Kimball, died Sunday, December 24, 2023.  Memorial Services will be held at later date. Friends may visit www.cantrellfh.com to view Michael’s Tribute Wall and share condolences and stories with the family.  The services for Michael have been entrusted to the Cantrell Funeral Home. 

Michael D. Curless was born February 23, 1937 to Donald Curless and Laura (Hollembeak) Curless in Quincy Illinois, Died in Kimball Nebraska.  He is preceded in death by his parents and sons Vade Curless (23), Scott, and Eric (infants) Curless.

Leaves behind his wife of 65 years Rose Curless (Wiggins), daughters Marcy Nameth, Rena Norvell, Velma (Jason) England and son Brandon (Cheri) Curless, 10 grandchildren and 8 great grandchildren

The Early Years

Mike was born in Blessing hospital in Quincy, Illinois, where Don and Laura resided at the time, they moved to New Salem, Illinois when he was two.  They stayed there until Mike was 10 when they were able to move back to the home place in Pike County where his grandfather had homesteaded.  Mike attended High School in Pittsfield and was the last graduating class at Higbee High. He was very active in 4H and FFA, he and his brother Kent started the Curless Brothers partnership and raised polled Hereford cattle.

College years

Mike attended Colorado A&M (CSU) where he studied Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, Animal Production, Business and Economics and Machinery Repair; this is where Mike met Rose.  She was the reason that he straightened out, took summer school to get his grades up, and graduated.  They met January 8th, 1958, on a blind date- after 65 years I would say that it stuck.  They both enjoyed learning to ski at Hidden Valley.

Married

Mike and Rose were married in Broadwater, Nebraska on September 7th, 1958, after Rose returned from an internship in Portland, Oregon for her degree in Occupational Therapy.

They both graduated in 1959, and then returned back to the family farm in Illinois

The Farm in Illinois 

Mike and Rose farmed with Don on the family farm in Illinois

Marcy was born September 25 in 1959 

Rena was born May 25 1961

Vade was born January 16 1963

Scott was born May 5 1967 and died later that year.

Mom & Dad were in a bowling league with their friends.   Grandpa Don had a boat & they enjoyed water skiing and family get-togethers on the Mississippi River.  

Colorado 

1967 Mike and Rose returned to Colorado where Mike began his career in construction.

Eric was born September 5 1969 and died as an infant

Velma was born November 17 1971

Brandon was born June 22 1976

During his time in Colorado, Dad took time to go fishing and hunting and enjoyed river rafting, rock climbing and repelling, ice climbing , and even set up a zip line before it was cool. 

Oregon 

1995 Moved to Halfway, Oregon to work on a bison ranch and the Clear Creek bed and breakfast

Mom and Dad enjoyed working with the buffalo and showing guests the area, they both loved being closer to the land and all the great fruits and berries the area offered.  They enjoyed the local high desert, and nearby Hells Canyon.

Nebraska

In 1998 Mike and Rose moved back to Nebraska to help take care of her mother who lived in Gering Nebraska 

Mike continued his construction career, but before long Dad got the itch and ended up 

buying Irish Dexter cattle and starting his own little herd that he grew and took care of.

They both enjoyed square dancing and loved any chance to go dancing together, they participated for years but covid shut down the groups.  

In January 2022 Dad suffered a stroke, it took a toll but dad did a good job of working at his recovery, even though he never got back to his original level of activity.  Last winter had been hard on him as he suffered from vertigo and didn’t feel comfortable getting out in the weather and was more susceptible to the cold weather 

This summer Dad discussed that he really didn’t want to go through another winter here. When we asked him where he wanted to go he didn’t have an answer… even though he acquiesced to stay here in Kimball.  We found it ironic that this last stroke happened on the first day of winter- the week before he had told Mom that if all he could do was sit around he didn’t think he would be around for Christmas.  He stuck around long enough for all the local family to gather to be with him one last time.  While gathered and listening to “It is Well with my Soul”, he took his last breath.