Darrel Mickelson was born July 12, 1944, to Lee and Doris (Chord) Mickelson. He grew up at their home just north of Enning, South Dakota. At the age of 9, he accepted Jesus into his heart at White Owl VBS, and was baptized in the Grotzke dam. He attended grade school in rural Meade County, completing high school at Sunshine Bible Academy in Miller, SD. Darrel went on to study at Pillsbury College, Wessington Springs College, and South Dakota School of Mines and Technology.
In the early 1970s, Darrel married Lois Burgess and together they had two children, Michael John and Jewel. This union ended in a heartbreaking divorce. In 1980, Darrel became quite interested in the new “schoolmarm,” Connie, at the school at Prairie Bible Church of God. After Connie was in a serious car accident that winter, Darrel asked when she was coming back. Her job had been given over, however, so she had no reason to return. Darrel said, “well, I thought we could get married or something.” Connie returned in the fall and they were married September 19, 1981. Together they had two children, Sally and Lee. Their niece, Sara (Hunt) Buls, came to live with them in 1995. In 1988, they purchased their ranch from Darrel’s uncle Bob Mickelson, and it became their home.
Darrel was a man of many talents and interests. He held many different jobs over the years; at various times he worked as a telephone lineman, manned missile sites, kept bees, milked cows, raised cattle and other animals. While operating the ranch, he homeschooled his kids and canned large amounts of produce. Darrel preached each week for many years, faithfully filling the pulpit for 3 years at Hereford and 16 years at Fairpoint. He played piano and banjo, and sang beautifully. One of his greatest joys was horticulture, and he took great delight in the beautiful garden and fruit trees he tended year after year. Darrel loved to tinker, invent, build, and problem-solve. He simply loved to learn and discover, especially those things involving nature and the way God designed the world to work.
Darrel had a tender heart. He partnered with his wife in the intense care of his mother, and later his mother-in-law. He cared deeply, as was clearly evident in the way he loved his family, his ranch, his animals, and his gardens. Darrel entered his eternal rest on November 14, 2022. He was 78 years old.
Darrel is survived by his wife, Connie (Mauk) Mickelson; son, Michael; daughter, Jewel; daughter, Sally Jo (Robert) Cooper and their son Wallace; son, Lee; brothers, Darwin and Sam; sisters, Anne, Rose, and Martha; several in-laws; numerous nieces and nephews and their children; and several cousins.
Darrel was preceded in death by his parents, Lee and Doris Mickelson; an infant sister, Verna Doris; sister-in-law, Della Rae Mickelson; sister and brother-in-law, Linda and Jim Peterson; and great-nephew, Nathaniel Peterson.
Visitation will be Friday, November 18, 2022, 4:00 – 7:00 p.m., at Kinkade Funeral Chapel, Sturgis, SD. Funeral services will be Saturday, November 19, 2022, 2:00 p.m., at the White Owl Church, White Owl, SD. Burial will follow at the White Owl Cemetery.
Condolences may be sent to the family at http://www.kinkadefunerals.com.