Michael Kraayenbrink

SIBLEY—Michael Kraayenbrink, age 56, of Sibley, Iowa, died Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019, at his home, surrounded by family, in Sibley, Iowa.

Funeral service will be 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 6, at First Reformed Church in Sibley, IA, with the Rev. Steven DeVries officiating. Burial will follow at the Holman Township Cemetery in Sibley, IA.

Visitation will be 4-8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 5, at the First Reformed Church of Sibley.

In lieu of flowers family would prefer memorials which will be designated to the Kindred Hospice and Sibley-Ocheyedan Schools.

Michael (Mike) Kraayenbrink was born in Canton, SD, to Dick and Virginia (Overlander) Kraayenbrink on his mom’s birthday, March 26, 1963. For most of his childhood, they lived in Sioux Center, IA, where he attended school through graduation in 1981. He attended Central College in Pella, IA, for one year before transferring to Northwestern College in Orange City, IA. While in college, he played basketball all four years while earning a BA in Physical Education, though he did not student teach at that time.

After graduation, he worked various jobs in construction and factory work. During that time, he met Laurie Ackerman, and they were married on Sept. 3, 1988. Their marriage was blessed with four children. When their first daughter, Katlyn, was one year old, they moved from Sioux Center to Pella, where he worked construction with his brother, Dan. Their second daughter, Michelle, was born there. During their year in Pella, he heard of a job opening in a group home with Hope Haven, and they once again moved to Sioux Center. Their sons, Andrew and Nathan, were both born during those years. He loved his time with Hope Haven working with the residents there, and that experience also made him decide to go back to school to finish his Elementary Education degree. He went back to Northwestern for a semester of classes and a semester of student teaching. He was hired at the Sibley-Ocheyedan Middle School as a fifth- and sixth-grade teacher in 2001. He had found his true calling! He loved teaching and had a patient way of dealing with his students and finding fun and interesting ways to get them to learn. He also enjoyed coaching baseball, basketball, football and volleyball. During a few summers, he worked at Village Northwest Unlimited because he had loved his time at Hope Haven and had missed that kind of work, too. In his spare time, he loved to be outside, fishing, golfing and spending time with his family.

In October of 2014, he was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer and started the long fight. He had two very long surgeries in 2014 and 2017. Eventually, he was unable to teach anymore, and he retired in May of 2018. That was one of the hardest decisions he had to make as he loved teaching and missed the students and staff at S-O.

In the early morning of Nov. 2, 2019, at the age of 56, Mike went to be with Jesus. He will be greatly missed by family and friends and the students at Sibley-Ocheyedan that he was able to teach and coach.

He is survived by, his wife, Laurie; his children, Katlyn (Steven) DeVries, Michelle (Jordan) Roddel, Andrew (Alexis) Kraayenbrink, and Nathan Kraayenbrink; his grandchildren, Ada DeVries and Ben DeVries and expected baby girl Kraayenbrink, his mom Virginia (Overlander) Kraayenbrink, his siblings, Dan (Doreen) Kraayenbrink, Steve (Deb) Kraayenbrink, and Rachel (Steve) Ballenger; and numerous nieces and nephews and great-nieces and great-nephews.

He was preceded in death by his dad, Dick Kraayenbrink; his grandparents, Ben and Jeanette Kraayenbrink and Fred and Ada Overlander; and a nephew, Joshua Kraayenbrink.