Otto J. Mihalich Sr. |

Otto J. Mihalich Sr.

Fruita, Colo., resident Otto J. Mihalich Sr. died Nov. 12, 2002, at Community Hospital in Grand Junction.

He was 78.

Mihalich was born Jan. 12, 1924, in Walsenburg, Colo., to Vinko and Mary (Ceaber) Mihalich. They lived in Walsenburg until Mihalich was 10 years old, at which time they moved to Haybro, Colo., and then a year later they moved to Oak Creek. He attended school at the Haybro and Trout Creek schools.

Mihalich served in the U.S. Army during WWII and was wounded in France. Following his discharge from the service, he returned to Oak Creek and on June 29, 1964, he married Nettie M. Hunter in Glenwood Springs.

Mihalich was a farmer and worked at various coal mines in the area as well as P&M Coal Mine where he worked until he retired in 1986.

He was very active in the Oak Creek Community serving several years on the town board and on the South Routt School Board. He was also a longtime member of the Oak

Creek Volunteer Fire Department until moving to Fruita two years ago.

He enjoyed hunting

and fishing.

Mihalich is survived by his daughter, Betty “Sissy” (Mike) Fredrickson, of Craig; son, Otto “Bud” (Shani) Mihalich Jr., of Fruita; sister, Olga Godeski, of Rifle, Colo.; and grandchildren Tiana Mihalich, Tristan,

Shelby, Kyle and Ashley Fredrickson.

He was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Walter; and wife, Nettie, who died in February of 2000.

Services were Nov. 12, 2002 at Oak Creek Cemetery with Mark Rossi and members of the Oak Creek Veterans of Foreign Wars Post officiating.

Pallbearers were David Long, Bret Mason, Travis Bruggink, Loren Kirby, Rick Villa and Danny Nelson.

Honorary pallbearers were all Otto’s many friends.

Interment was at Oak

Creek Cemetery.

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