Michael D. Kannel, 70, of Montpelier died unexpectedly on June 21, 2022. Mike was born in Toledo, Ohio, on January 12, 1952, to Ira “Smitty” and Marilyn (Schafer) Kannel. He graduated from Montpelier High School in 1970 and was a proud lifelong resident of Montpelier, serving as one of three generations at Kannel Insurance.
He married his helpmate for life, Susan (Brumbaugh) Kannel, on August 15, 1976, and she survives. Together they were blessed with three sons (and daughters-in-law): Chris & Michelle (Marion) of Montpelier, Steve & Amy (Kaylor) of Springfield, TN, and Ben & Bridget (Hoffer) of Auburn, IN. His eight grandchildren were a huge source of pride and added to the arrows in his quiver: Olivia, Dexter, and Emily Kannel (Montpelier); Elijah, Jude, and Miriam Kannel (Springfield), and Evelyn & Lily Kannel (Auburn). Mike is also survived by his mother, Marilyn, and three siblings, Philip (Debra) of Vero Beach, FL; Cynthia (Willard) Barrett of Montpelier; and Suzie (Brian) Miller of Bryan. He was preceded in death by his father.
While his family and his faith in Jesus were the driving forces in his life, Mike had many interests. He had the ability to see what things could be, not just what they are. His creativity, eye for beauty, and woodworking & home renovation skills led him to spend countless hours in the workshop. He enjoyed restoring and enhancing the family’s 1885 Victorian home, revitalizing old furniture, remodeling various properties in town, and helping his many friends and family with their own projects.
One of his greatest gifts was equipping others for home repair and maintenance. Mike loved working alongside his sons, grandsons, and close family friends, passing on what he knew. He taught his sons how to make everyday repairs and how to dream up renovations in their own houses. He could often be found sketching at the kitchen table, scheming about knocking out this wall or rebuilding that staircase. He was always learning new skills and working hard not only to get the project done, but to teach others in the process. He also loved to sing and play the piano and used those talents to bless his church family, from singing in gospel quartets to accompanying Sunday morning worship.
His 1965 Lincoln Continental convertible was his chosen beauty even before Sue came along, and Mike was active in planning the Empire Street Cruise-Ins. He enthusiastically served with the Montpelier Church of Christ, Montpelier Rotary Club, Montpelier Area Foundation, Montpelier Vintage Homes Association, and the Olde Tyme Holiday Gathering. He was an instigator and promoter of numerous community investments and organizations through the years and enjoyed being part of efforts that promoted the Montpelier community and helped others.
Mike’s family grieves with hope, resting on the Bible’s promises that he will “dwell in the house of the Lord forever” (Psalm 23:6) because Mike trusted in the blood of the Lamb, Jesus Christ.
Visitation will be held on Monday, June 27, 2022, from 3:00–7:00 p.m. at the Thompson Funeral Home in Montpelier. The funeral will be held on Tuesday, June 28, 2022, at 10:30 a.m. at the Montpelier Church of Christ with Pastor Adam Fox to officiate. A graveside service to follow at Riverside Cemetery in Montpelier. In lieu of flowers, those wishing to honor Mike are asked to make a donation to the Montpelier Church of Christ for the Woodburn Christian Children’s Home.