MCGROUARY, Michael E., age 73
Died: Friday, November 16th, 2018
Mass of Christian Burial: 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, November 21, 2018 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Eau Claire with Father Brian Jazdzewski officiating
Visitation: 9:00 a.m. until time of Mass on Wednesday at church
Interment: Forest Hill Cemetery, Eau Claire, Wisconsin
In lieu of flowers, the family would prefer you give memorials to a charity or organization you are passionate about
Michael E. McGrouary (aka Mr. Mike), age 73, founder of Mike's Smoke House, passed away on Friday, November 16, 2018 at his home.
He was born on January 29, 1945 to the late Robert and Agnes (Voll) McGrouary in Eau Claire. Mike spent his childhood along the shores of Lake Altoona boating, waterskiing, and eventually landing his first job at the beach concession stand. He attended St. Benedicts Academy grade school (now St. Mary's) in Altoona and later attended and graduated from Regis High School in 1963. Shortly after graduation he began working at Uniroyal, where he would spend the next 13 years. During this time, he also proudly served his country in the United States Army stationed at Fort Richardson in Anchorage, AK serving as a medic in the 64th field hospital.
Mike met his wife, Luann Lium, for the first time when they were in 8th grade at a Christ Church dance and walked her home. They did not see each other again until 1976 when he asked her to dance at the Left Guard. On July 4, 1981 they were married at St. Patrick's Catholic Church by Fr. Heagle.
Mike sold his beloved 1969 corvette to purchase a smoker for his next adventure which was to open a restaurant in 1978 - Mike's Smokehouse. In the 23 years Mike owned and operated the business, he created an iconic establishment in the Eau Claire area and touched many lives through his generous spirit. He knew the success of the business was not solely his doings. Mike had many dedicated, loyal and hardworking employees. They were family to him.
In his pastime, Mike enjoyed deer and pheasant hunting and was a car enthusiast. Mike took pride in having some of the nicest and fastest cars in town. He was proud of his Irish heritage, always joking around and tricking someone. Most of all, Mike loved his family, friends and his canine companions. He was a beloved husband, step father, son, brother and uncle. Those that knew him were lucky to have him as a friend. We will miss his dearly.
Mike is survived by his wife of 37 years, Luann; stepdaughters, Denise "DeeDee" (Nick) Payovich and their children, Brooke, Morgan and Tyler of Eagle River, AK, Nicole (Rich) Riggs and their children, Lindsey, Sidney and Cole of Sitka, AK; sister, Michelle (Jim) Borgia of Findlay, OH; sisters-in-law, Renee "Cookie" Krassau of Hudson, WI, Patty (Greg) Gardner Eau Claire, WI, and Lana (Charlie) Kramer Fall Creek, WI; brother-in-law, Don Nelson of North Branch, MN; and many beloved nieces, nephews, other family members, amazing friends and his dog, Sage.
He was preceded in death by his parents; mother-in-law, Wanda J. Lium; sister and brother-in-law, Nancy (Bill) Riley; sister and brother-in-law, Sally (Bill) Robinson; sister-in-law, Judy (nee Lium) Nelson; and brother-in-law, Karl Krassau.