Michael Duffeck

Michael Allen Duffeck, 65, passed away peacefully, attended by his loving family, at The Bluffs in Columbia on Saturday, May 24, 2014.

In lieu of a funeral, celebrations of Mike’s life will be held in Columbia and Racine on a date TBA in November, around his birthday.

Mike was born in Racine, Wis., on Nov. 27, 1948, the son of the late Stella May Pelikan (née Anderson) and Allen (Ely) Duffeck, who died prematurely in 1952.

Mike graduated from Park High School in 1966, with a football scholarship to Iowa State University. His first career was in music, playing bass for Brian Lee, and then Jim Liban’s band, Short Stuff. Mike earned his master’s degree in education and his second career was teaching English at Jefferson Junior High School. He then worked for Shelter Insurance for 17 years as manager of claims training. His final career was for the state of Missouri as the manager of insurance licensing in Jefferson City.

Mike was passionate in his love for his family, the Green Bay Packers and golf. An avid reader prior to his illness, he enjoyed literature and history. He was a gentle man of great kindness and concern for others, with a wonderful sense of humor.

He leaves behind his wife of 39 years, Martha Brownlee-Duffeck; and his beloved sons, Daniel and David Duffeck of Columbia. Mike also leaves behind two brothers, Robert (Suzanne Moe) Duffeck of Waukesha and David (Valerie) Duffeck of Racine, Wis.; and his sister, Mary (Robert) Nelson, also of Racine.

Mike was diagnosed with head/neck cancer in 2002, disabled after brain surgery in 2007, and suffered a stroke on April 4, 2014. His family’s heartfelt gratitude goes out to the many special people who helped him along his 12-year journey and allowed him to maintain his quality of life.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to Hospice Compassus at www.chafoundation.org, or the charity of your choice.



  1. Brian Callahan on June 2, 2014 at 7:52 am

    Dear Mari,

    It is with great sadness that I learned of Mr. Duffeck’s passing. He was always a class act and a good friend. I hope for comfort for you in knowing he is now longer in pain and is golfing and cheering the Packers from a good place.

  2. Glenda Larm on June 2, 2014 at 9:39 am

    Mahri, David and Daniel, I will never forget working with Mike at Shelter. He was a stand-out individual–kind, caring, creative, smart, compassionate. And what a great sense of humor! He volunteered to help others with their workloads, even when he had plenty of his own to do. Some of my favorite Shelter memories include Mike. He will be remembered and greatly missed. My condolences to you all.

  3. Ron and Marsha Sergent on June 3, 2014 at 2:26 pm

    Ron and I are so very sad to hear of Mike’s passing. We both have wonderful memories of this good, gentle and kind man. Your family is in our prayers.

    Marsha Sergent

  4. Liz Wells on June 3, 2014 at 3:59 pm

    I am so very sorry to hear of your loss.

  5. Insurance Licensing Section on June 4, 2014 at 11:16 am

    Mari, David and Daniel,

    The Licensing Section at the Dept. of Insurance would like to extend our heartfelt condolences. During Mike’s tenure as our Manager he served the staff, as well as the State of Missouri, with intelligence, dignity, humility, patience, kindness and always with a sense of humor. We are saddened to hear of his passing and want you to know that we are all thinking of you and praying for you during this time.

  6. Tom Fugate on June 6, 2014 at 9:29 am

    To The Family of Mike Duffeck:
    I had the privilege of being Mike’s English teacher for two years when he was a junior and senior at WPHS in Racine. He was then and, by all accounts remained, the earnest, kind and hard working person when I knew him Few students left on me the deep impression Mike did. There is no question in my mind that I, the teacher, learned more from him, the student than he did from me! I am deeply saddened by his death and will forever remember that kind, intelligent, sweet young man from 1967. Sincerely, Tom Fugate

  7. Susan Schulte on June 6, 2014 at 5:18 pm

    To Mike’s family:
    I had the privilege of working with Mike at the MO Department of Insurance and was sadden to see his obituary in the local paper. You described him perfectly–Mike truly was “a gentle man of great kindness and concern for others, with a wonderful sense of humor.” He will be missed…keep his memories close in your heart and he’ll always be with you. Thinking of you and keeping you in my prayers, Susie Schulte

  8. Larry Reddin on June 26, 2014 at 9:02 pm

    So sad to hear of Mike’s passing. He was a wonderful man. I can still hear his kind laugh from so many years ago. My thoughts go out to you and the boys.

  9. Jeff Johnson on December 6, 2014 at 12:56 pm

    Mike was directly responsible for my decision to become an educator (long story involving Mari’s brief stint as a softball player). We shared a love for movies, music and sports. Our time together was far too short. I’ll always hold Mike is high esteem for being a caring, fun-loving person – nothing but good memories.

    Daniel and David both remind me of Mike in many ways, and that’s a high compliment.

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