Marvin Mikesh


In loving memory of Marvin James Mikesh

August 6, 1936 – July 30, 2021

We will remember our dad Marv as a loving husband to his wife Carol.  He was a parent who shared life experiences and adventures which created a love of exploring the world for his family.

Marv began his career in Moville, IA teaching 7th grade science & coaching football.  He then moved the family to Rochester in 1965 to begin teaching at Kellogg Jr High and then on to John Adams Jr. High until retirement. He maintained close friendships with many of the faculty from both schools. Marv managed to combine his love of teaching & travel by taking a year sabbatical, once in Germany and once again in Norway.  Through his travels, he met a multitude of international friends who he visited often and remained friends to this day.  During his lifetime, Marv saw & visited 46 countries whether it was through teaching or pleasure

In his lifetime, Marv worked with Will Steger, Live Arnesen and Ann Bancroft as part of a group of environmental educators.  Their forward thinking on the concerns about climate change was ahead of their time.  He also worked with the World School in Denmark sharing American teaching techniques to international students.

Kayaking was his passion, and he retired his paddle after 5,000 miles.

He is survived by his daughter Jeanne (Mark) Vale, son, Mark (Katie Ulwelling) and daughter Ann Mikesh. He leaves behind six grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

He was proceeded in death by his loving wife Carol, his Father & Mother Ray & Adeline Mikesh, Brother, Don (Louise) Zahasky and Brother Ray (Barbara) Mikesh Jr.

He was a wonderful husband, father, grandfather and friend and we will miss his daily.

Rochester Cremation Services is assisting the family with arrangements. Memories and condolences of Marv may be shared at

19 thoughts on “Marvin Mikesh

  1. I worked with Marv for most of my years at John Adams. I was proud to be able to help him as a paraprofessional in the computer lab and as clerical help to the entire department. Marv constantly worked at his profession, adding new methods of teaching, removing what he felt wasn’t helping students as it should, revising methods and materials. I don’t think he ever taught the same unit exactly the same as the previous year. His last year before retirement he was still revising his approach to the subject. He made the most of his life and it was my privilege to help him in his constant quest to be a better teacher and colleague. I also was proud to call him my friend. RIP Marv.

  2. Jeanne, Mark, and kids;
    What an awesome example of how to live a life. His loss will cut deep to a lot of people. Anybody whom knew him is a better person, be it as a friend, student, or coworker. God bless his soul.

  3. Marv was a “horizon marker” for all educators locally and globally. Lucky for us he was always eager to share insightful perspective about techniques and strategies that made us all richer in our individual classrooms. His smiling face and smiling eyes were a warm and generous welcome to his heartfelt concern for you as a person. The earth has lost a great caretaker, the educational community has lost a great public servant and many of us have lost a man that we all admired so…

  4. Marv and Carol were such wonderful neighbors. With our own parents out of state, they helped us out so often and were like grandparents to my girls when they were little. Their presence will be greatly missed.

  5. In loving memory of Marvin Mikesh, Please accept our most heartfelt sympathies for your loss. Marv was my science teacher at JA in the 1980’s. In 1992, during his time off, my wife Sonia filled in for him and was welcomed into the JA science dept after she got her foot into the door. Later, in 2001 we moved a block from Marv and Carol and loved their dogs (Dolly especially). We were always welcomed into their home and our daughter Stephanie loved to stop by and make cookies with them. Marv was always going somewhere and exercising/keeping active. God Bless you, Marv. You and Carol were GREAT neighbors. Dewey Ellsworth

  6. Mr Mikesh was my science teacher in the 80’s at John Adam’s and to this day I know the hardness scale of minerals. That will be something that I will always remember.

  7. Mr. Mikesh was one of my favorite teachers of all time. He taught me 40 years ago and I still remember him and some of the science I learned from him. Fond memories of science trips. His dedication to students is not forgotten.

  8. Marv was a great teacher, story teller, and friend to many. I remember him very well as my science teacher at John Adams. His stories of his own worldly adventures were unreal and often inspired us to try new things. His teaching was always fun and engaging. To his family, I pray you can find peace during this time and are able to celebrate his great life with us all.

  9. He truly had a passion for opening the eyes and minds of young people. He was one of my favorite teachers and will be missed!

  10. Mister Mikesh was my earth science teacher in 1978. He was taking groups to Northern Minnesota in the summer and I was lucky enough to be in one of those. What a fantastic educator , and such a kind human being. Multiply the impact he made in one girl’s life by all the students whose lives he touched. Wow.

  11. I will always remember Marv as a unique and wonderful person. I worked with him at John Adams and spent great times with him in the Boundary Waters.

  12. Mr. Mikesh was my science teacher at John Adams in the early 1980s. I didn’t realize it at the time how special it was to have a teacher take a group of 7th and 8th graders on a multiple day camping trip after the academic year was over. I still tell people about visiting the taconite mine. The trip and his class were the highlights of my junior high experience. What an amazing teacher he was.

  13. Mr. Mik -as he was known to us -was not only my science teacher for many classes, he was my “homeroom” teacher for 7th 8th and 9th grade…so those that remember, he was the first discipline everyday. At first, he was an intimidating physical presence that quickly turned into a adult you felt safe to be around and confide in.
    Mr Mik took extra time with me to learn atomic values…he always said science is for making our lives and our planet better….now i have a comfortable life in solar energy.
    Mr. Mikesh was passionate about his overhead projector. A couple buddies and I put a table on top of his projector before class-you know the 2 person trapezoid wood top with metal legs, weighs like 50 #- he walked in, picked up the table by a leg with ONE hand, moved it and continued. We never did anything like that again!

    With all of the factors that shaped and molded my life at that awkward and challenging time…I’m grateful he is one of them…

  14. Marv and I were friends and colleagues since 1965. We taught together and played together. We made numerous trips to the boundary waters and played rounds of golf too numerous to mention. We had a poker group that played for all those years too. I considered Marv a very close friend. I knew I could depend on him if I needed help. He will be “greatly” missed.

  15. What a life well lived! Mr. Mikesh was one of my sister’s favorite teachers at Kellogg and served as a pall bearer at her funeral. In addition to being a great teacher, he was a wonderful support to me at John Adams and holds a special place in my heart. Peace to you and your family, Jeanne.

  16. Dear Jeanne, Mark, Ann and family,

    Love and support to all of you.

    My wife Kim and I send our sincere apologies for missing your Mom and Dad’s combined service. We can imagine a very beautiful setting for its celebration. In addition, the event must have been deep and rich with memories of a such a good man.

    Your Dad had asked Bob more than once to preside at his service. Unfortunately, a long-planned nephew’s wedding in Colorado on the same date got in the way.

    When we visited your dad a few weeks before his passing, he expressed much gratitude for the tremendous support that you, his family, had given him and your mom.

    When we think of your Dad, so many good qualities come to mind such as: enthusiasm, original thought, self-reliance, curiosity, dignity, integrity, unselfishness, willingness to communicate, kindness, strength, discipline, reason, love of children, love of nature, appreciation of solitude, courage, spontaneity, and love of adventure. From our standpoint, all of you include the above (divine) qualities too!

    In addition, thank you for acquainting us, in Marv’s eloquent obituary, with Ann Bancroft – his fellow explorer and friend. We have donated to her charity in your Dad’s name. We appreciate that the charity helps “… give girls the strength to achieve their full potential.”

    Much love, B & K

  17. My sincere condolences to the Mikesh family. Sadly, I’m just learning now of Marv’s death making me fully aware of just how long its been since our last meeting. The reality of time and distance in no way has ever diminished my respect and admiration for Marv.
    I was one of the fortunate few who worked with Marv on the Steger project. In fact, Marv recruited me for the project following a presentation I’d made at a MECC Conference in Minneapolis. He didn’t have to “sell” me on the idea, I know a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and it truly was.
    Marv was at once our coach, our biggest cheerleader and chief motivator. He never saw anything as unachievable and his enthusiasm was infectious. Marv was the model for the expression, Enthusiasm, it can’t be taught, but it can be caught.
    He once told me how he planned to retire – without fanfare. I never forgot that conversation and some 20 years later when my retirement came I walked away quietly and never looked back – MarvStyle.
    Marv was one of the truly great people I’ve had the honor of knowing and I’m proud to number him among the few people I consider role models. Most of all I’m proud to have known him and honored by the faith he had in me.
    Rest in Peace, Marv.

  18. Times goes by and 40 years are gone so fast since I met Marv.
    It was during my 3 years in IBM Rochester 1981 1983, but the memory of those times is still so fresh like the trip to the Boundary waters or the time we spent trying yo teach to an italian soccer playera yo play american football.
    Or when I visited Matv amd Carol in Oslo and we went skiyng.
    Or…many times more.
    Grazie Marv
    Il tuo Amico

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


©Copyright 2024 Rochester Cremation Services

Rochester, MN Custom Web Development by MLT Group

Address :
 1605 Civic Center Dr NW
 Rochester, MN 55901
Phone :
Fax :