On Wednesday, November 9th, 2022, Michael Dorendorf, husband of Leslie and
father of Neil and Ross, passed away at the age of 74.
Michael was born in
Fairmont Minnesota on February 29, 1948.
Mike grew up in Winnebago where he graduated from high school and developed a
keen interest in everything cars. He went on to pursue and graduate with a
bachelor’s degree in Industrial Education from the University of Wisconsin-Stout.
While in school he hunted down any Corvette that had been in a fender bender,
restored it, and sold it for some cold-hard cash. No vehicle was off limits. Mike
restored cars, trucks, boats, and even painted airplanes. He followed his passion for
the automotive industry by teaching in the autobody program at 916 Vocational
School. He met and married the love of his life, Leslie Masterman, in 1978 and
they spent 44 wonderful years together. Michael moved on from teaching at 916 to
work for PPG Industries as a Training Center Manager for
autobody paints and finishes.
Michael loved his family, Corvettes, traveling, fixing anything, and taking in the
sunsets on Sanibel Island, FL. He was a kind, loving, and caring husband and
father. He always made time for everyone close to him despite his many travels for
work. He spent 13 years restoring a 1964 Corvette Sting Ray which is arguably one
of the nicest Corvettes in existence (trust me, it’s nice). If you simply described the
shape of a corvette fender, headlight style, and a few other minor details, Mike
could tell you the generation, year, and options of the Corvette you were talking
about. We all remember Mike as the fix-it guy, there was nothing he couldn't do
and of course he did everything perfectly. He, Leslie, and a few other family
members and friends completely ripped an old farmhouse down to the studs and
put in all back together. He along with his family worked year after year at their
cabin on Balsam Lake to continually improve everything to the relaxing paradise it
is today (again, trust me it’s amazing!). He took breaks from working now and
again to travel across the United States and Europe with his wife and family. He
particularly enjoyed taste testing the many beers that Europe had to offer. Spoiler
alert, Guinness is the best. It was especially sweet to sip a select beverage while
watching the sun slowly melt away into the horizon into the Gulf of Mexico from
Sanibel Island. Even while relaxing on vacation at a condo where everything is
supposed to be taken care of, Michael found a way to get to work. The community
grill outside needed some TLC which Michael noticed right away and started
giving it the cleaning of a lifetime. Folks from maintenance noticed him cleaning
and thanked him saying, “we need more folks with energy like you around!” Mike
politely said no and continued scrubbing the grate until it was shiny enough to
signal someone on mars. This was just one of the many acts of kindness that Mike
offered the world without every asking for anything in return.
Michael is preceded in death by his parents Edward and Lorraine Dorendorf and
sister Patricia Ann. He is survived by his wife Leslie, two sons Neil (Amanda) of
Stillwater and Ross of Ketchikan, Alaska, and brother Bruce (Mary) Dorendorf.
Other family includes Kaye (Garland) Kotek, Mary (Milan) Sulc, Jim Masterman,
Susan (Jeff) Olson, Peggy (David) Hansen, and many nieces and nephews.
Memorials preferred to Rutherford Cemetery or the donors choice